Collision Course of Putin in Former Soviet Republics

The USSR was a communist state and federal union of 15 national republics spanning Eurasia from 1922 to 1991. These republics included Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Estonia, Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan. All formed independent states by the dissolution of the USSR in 1991.

Coming up Roses, Mountains, Churches and Folklore in Bulgaria

Bulgaria in the Balkan Peninsula is one of the last members of the European Union (2007), a big geopolitical change for this former socialist republic. Traveling there is a step back in time with folklore, ancient sites and older architecture eclipsing modernity. You can also step in time in traditional group dances and smell the roses that abundantly grow in this southeastern European country.

Clubs, Churches, Coffeehouses and Christmas in Kyiv, Ukraine

Kyiv, Ukraine was a golden child of the Golden Age then was destroyed twice, most recently, during World War II. But it rose like a phoenix, becoming an important city of the USSR then the capital of independent Ukraine. Today it’s a hub for glorious churches, coffeehouses and clubs, turning its ashes into golden dust.

Viking Discoveries Down the “Blue” Danube

When Johann Strauss entitled his famous 1866 waltz “The Blue Danube,” he must have been wearing blue-tinted glasses or simply drunk. This river is no more blue than I can waltz. However, its banks are lined with magnificent buildings, charming villages and three European capitals. It also unites a formally divided continent.

From Communism to Humanism in Moldova

Moldova, a former USSR country between Romania and Ukraine, is caught between political idealism and economic reality. But in the middle are friendly, humble people.

Fire Land, Earth Wine, Sulfur Water and Godly Air in the Caucasus

Gergeti Trinity Church, north Georgia, Caucasus

Noah’s Ark purportedly landed in the Caucasus, a region between the Black and Caspian Seas where the Caucasus Mountains divide Eastern Europe and Western Asia. The latter in the South Caucasus includes Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia, where fire, earth, water and air are “biblical.” No wonder the ark survived.

Easter Bunny Trail in Germany, America and Armenia

Teapot Sculpture Yerevan, Armenia

While Easter has been a Christian celebration for centuries, it began as a non-religious spring festival. And the Easter bunny hopped to America from another country. Moreover, the first Christian state in the world was in West Asia. Discover a basket of “eggs-cellent” facts …

Denmark is about 50 times smaller than Greenland with only 2 percent of its land space (43,000 vs. 2 million km2). However, Greenland has 1 percent of Denmark’s population (58,000 vs. 5.9 million).