Sorrow and Joy in Yekaterinburg

September 13, 2019 We have free time until 2pm today, when Evgeny escorts us on a tour of his beautiful city. We pass the World Cup Stadium from last year’s games on the way out of town to visit a mass grave of victims of Stalin’s repressions. By accident a farmer discovered some bones, and it was discovered that over 18,000 had been buried here. After examining the archives in the KGB office, names were able to be listed at the graves. A truly moving experience.

World Cup Stadium in Yekaterinburg (not a great photo from the bus window).
Art installation at the mass gravesite.
Tablets bearing names of Stalin’s victims
An obelisk in the center has religious symbols on the four sides: Jewish, Orthodox, Muslim, and Christian
My God forgive these atrocities and may they rest in peace.
To perk up the mood, we visit a symbolic dividing line between Europe and Asia. Fun to have a foot in each continent.
We’re torn – which way should we go? Asia wins!
It is a popular place for wedding photos.
Next we visit a monastery built at the place in the countryside where the Romanov family’s bodies were discarded after their murder in Yekaterinburg. Portraits of all the family members line the path here.
The Romanov children – all are now sainted.
The mineshaft opening where they threw their bodies and covered them with acid and set them on fire.
Monks in conversation at the monastery
Romanov family portrait – all are saints now, in a world that is turned upside down from that time.
Church of the Blood in Yekaterinburg on the site where the Romanovs were murdered.
As they were held captive, every day they were allowed to have a visit with a priest for prayers. On this particular day the priest began saying the prayer for the departed, and they kneeled in anticipation of what was to come.
Image of how they were dressed at the time of their murder. Several of their most devoted servants went to their deaths with them.
Photo of the bullet-filled room after the Romanovs were shot.
Home of a wealthy merchant near the Church of the Blood.
Sunset at the Church of the Blood.

We go to a pedestrian street and enjoy free time for shopping and grabbing dinner before we return to the train and begin the long journey to Novosibirsk (almost 24 hours). Another wonderful day along the Trans-Siberian Railroad.

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