Happy Holidays Readers

Ukrainian ladies in EU

As I sit here thinking about the last few days, I can’t help but think about what I was doing this time in 2021. So much has changed with so much human tragedy. I will name these events in descending order from newest to oldest with the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the evacuation.

Kherson has been liberated with Russia retreating to finally preserve the lives of their troops… but don’t worry, there is time for them to screw it up! Ukrainian troops pushed deep into Kherson Oblast after their success in the late summer offensive. Who would have guessed that drones would change the face of warfare? Towed artillery like the American triple 7 Howitzer and the GPS-guided Excalibur round have leveled the battlefield, both literally and figuratively. Simple stuff that is used every day is now some special event. With power grid issues, burst water pipes, and natural gas (maybe propane) service interruptions, life as we know it has become more of a challenge.

Little stuff like me being able to cook and enjoy a family get-together is a luxury that I had in 2021. My apartment in Odesa was a 5-minute walk to the Black Sea. My partner Katya had never experienced a Thanksgiving, and my pal Kiwi Mike (clearly a New Zealander) and his date had also never enjoyed this American tradition… and that ended Thanksgiving day, 2021. Our Thanksgiving is always the last Thursday of every November. It was challenging to find the ingredients I needed to cook but COSMO near Arcadia, Odessa had almost everything I needed.

We found a turkey breast because there were no whole birds in any of the markets. In the USA this is a HUGE deal and turkey is a staple of this holiday. Next, I made Macaroni and Cheese pie. It had a couple of eggs, plus heavy cream, lots of cheese, cooked pasta, and BOOM… oven-cooked Macaroni Pie that your guests will want to take home. A fruit salad is a must. Just fruit and cherries with cherry juice. Katya really liked the turkey along with the Mac and Cheese. I also managed to make my family recipe “turkey cornbread stuffing” which was absolutely a hit. The meal was prepared so well that the vegan in the bunch wanted to take some turkey with Mac and cheese. When I think back to that time I have a mix of emotions. I loved being there with my partner in that apartment. Every part of my time there was beautiful. Skipping ahead now 365 days later I just feel empty.

In previous blog posts, I explained how my 2022 has gone so far. We lost an unborn little boy, a war is raging, Katya had to move to another country to be safe, and it is safe to say that things have been really screwed up. My health has been crazy, and Katya has gone through so much in the last year. Losing a child has changed my life. I’m more reserved and careful and I constantly think about family life. I can’t even begin to imagine what my partner was feeling. With me it is all mental… depression and anxiety… but with Katya, she had to carry the baby for 16 weeks and she also had to deal with all of the mental health stuff.

I failed at that part! Keeping her thoughts away from all the loss was totally lost. Pain and worry consumed me and I dropped the ball. There is no way to say it other than that. I could have and should have just sat there with my mouth shut waiting to help my sick partner. I just can’t forgive myself for all of this. It appears my health is paying me back for my lack of focus. In my experience, when we screw up so badly, all that is left is a slow and steady route to partial redemption. About 50% of me says I will never have her in life again, but still, some part of me says that I MUST FIX THIS.

My stay in Odessa had ended. Katya was so disappointed in me for having to leave but truly I had already overstayed by 93 days so it was time to leave. Our love was just starting when I had to fly home. I had all that I wanted and needed but still had to fly home. She stayed behind, discovered we were pregnant, visited the doctor, began to eat better, and here I was… sitting in the USA while the love of my life visited the doctor all alone. Every part of me hated not being there!!! My girl was truly a lady with me opening doors or taking care of the things men do… carry luggage and pay the bills.

I had surgery when I arrived back in the USA and Katya tried to make contact from what I was told. All of this metal in my body has finally begun to need to be replaced. In Bucharest, I was there when she had the emergency surgery (emergency abortion to save her life and womb) although they didn’t let me go into her room. March 5th was the date of our tragedy and I was told that on March 8th the mask mandate was expiring. I’m sure this was her first time in such a hospital. Private room, great healthcare, but not the best communication. That was in early March. I finally flew back home to the USA on June 28th and hated it the entire way.

To be clear I am 100% a patriot. I love my country! The USA is the best of all worlds but that doesn’t mean that I can’t travel and see the world. The absolute most beautiful women in the world are Ukrainian. Everything they do is very much ladylike. My Katya had a way of casually reminding me that I needed to pay extra attention. Stuff like taking her coat in the restaurant, opening doors, guiding her by the arm on a cobblestone street, and the ever so slight way she leaned into me to keep a warm touch.
Flash forward to 365 days later and my girl is in Romania, I’ve had surgery twice, and most of all, Ukraine now fights the plague of Russians invading territory and trying to erase the Ukrainian way of life.

In my experience in Gadyich, they had everything they needed. The pharmacies were low on inventory, and the market had some challenges. My Katya was ready to leave there. I felt bad for her being the only daughter. She had to clean EVERYTHING. I should have been better, more understanding, and more patient. With the war in Ukraine and many complications with our baby, there was just too much. Lives have been torn apart, people have died, and yet love can still find a way.

I think by reading this blog you can tell that I have deep pride and regret over the last year. Thanksgiving 2021 was the best I have ever had. I was with a beautiful person that loved me, and we had friends over to celebrate. I can still see the mandarin orange with Seagrams cognac from that day. At some point in this wonderful time our son was conceived. I suppose I talk about this because I miss it. I suppose I wish I could go back in time to fix all of this. Ukraine has been changed forever and the future, and I will continue my future there. I have personal experience with a dacha and all that goes along with it. In the west, we think BIG MONEY for 15 acres with mature fruit trees but it’s super cheap to buy a nice “fixer-upper.”

My overall point is to shed some light on how hard life has become for typical Ukrainians. My own story weaves in and out of the events of 2021. For the most part, 2021 was a challenge, but a beautiful ending was waiting for me. My prize for opening my life to a new woman is a deep insight into nature, better health, and at the time, the promise of a new love…one for the ages. She’s gone but Ukrainians still need your help! Be brave and donate or volunteer your time. I am certain that IF YOU OPEN YOUR EYES (and heart) you will meet a hard-working, kind, focused, beautiful women that can give you all you need to sustain a life full of exactly what you want. Every fiber in my soul says that THIS trip is one you should take. It’s okay to check the site to find any Ukrainian ladies that currently live somewhere in the EU. I wish you great success and I will see you next time.

Slava Ukraini!


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Author: Andy Scoggins

Andrew has traveled extensively from his home on the Outer Banks of North Carolina having starting his journey through the former Soviet Union in Winter of 2012 to Novokuznetsk, then on to Ukraine's Lviv, Kyiv, Kharkov, and finally his second home, Odessa.  

2 Replies to “Happy Holidays Readers”

  1. Elijah says: 09/02/2024 at 22:11

    I need lady from phipine

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