This is a photo of my darling chief culinary consultant and I while visiting Petropavlovsk, Russia in September. Petropavlousk is the only sizable city on Kamchatka Peninsula and home to over half the peninsula’s population. The 776 mile long KAMCHATKA PENINSULA, westward from Alaska between the Sea of Okhotsk and the Bering Sea, is often called the ‘land of smoking volcanoes. The peninsula is about the size of England, Scotland and Wales together.
The Kamchatka peninsula is the home to the Kamchatka Volcanoes, a chain of active and dormant volcanoes stretching from the east to the northwest. Their imposing beauty is one of the highlights of the region. 300 plus volcanoes can be found on this peninsula known as Russia’s Far East Region.
We toured the Russian countryside and visited a dacha. A dacha is a weekend cottage in the country where Russian people build greenhouses and gardens for growing vegetables and flowers. Almost every family also grows strawberries, a practice dating back to the times of the Soviet Union when the masses had problems buying fresh fruit and vegetables due to the absence of effective storage.
In the past, people built dachas themselves. Today, those who are wealthy enough can afford to have them built.
Some of the dachas resemble cottages, and are sufficient to live in throughout the year. Many still are used only during the summer months.
The dacha we visited was being operated as a bed and breakfast. Since we are former bed and breakfast innkeepers it was fun for us to meet the husband and wife team!
However, I am sure American guests would not be crazy about the small bedrooms, outfitted with twin beds and no heat or air conditioning!
Our dacha host and hostess treated us to a traditional Russian tea and pancakes accompanied by jam and honey.
Our host and hostess were so gracious, posing for our vacation photos!
Finishing our countryside dacha visit we walked along the port and coastal area of Petropavlovsk with new-found friends, Georgina and Chris. They brought their Russian hats all the way from New Zealand and proudly wore them (on a very warm day) just long enough for this picture!
Love Locks are a Russian tradition. The hundreds of padlocks attached to the railings are a common custom. Just-married couples decorate a commemorative padlock and lock it to the railing, throwing the key into the water signifying their undying love for each other. Sadly, many of these padlocks outlive the marriages they are commemorating. The Russian divorce rate is at an all time high which makes me question the strength of those padlocks!
Our one-day stop in Petropavlovsk gave us a little taste of Russia before continuing our cruise which began in Alaska and would end in Tokyo, Japan.
1 Timothy 2:1
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people—