Paying a visit to Yanukovych
On Saturday, crowds of Ukrainians went to visit President Yanukovych in Mezhigiriya, near Kiev. The host himself could not receive his guests in person, as he had performed a tactical retreat, or, speaking less formally, he had fled. Having crossed a high fence and golden gates, I found myself in a real palace of wonders, as one of those described in ‘One Thousand and One Nights’. But I was awash with contrasting emotions: on the one hand: joy that I was able to walk around an area so beautiful and that had been reclaimed for society, on the other hand; appalled by the bad taste of the former owner which mercilessly afflicted my eyes. The vast estate itself is extremely picturesque, located on the high bank of the Dnieper backwaters. Still, the buildings are decorated in the style of vain ‘Russian nouveau-riche’. A monstrous wooden villa with cement replicas of Greek columns at its foot will certainly cause a great stir. A young ‘tourist’" presented her theory, according to which, the ostentatious surrounding of oneself with wealth was Yanukovich’s attempt aimed at compensating himself for his difficult childhood and poor youth. On the shore, you can see hangars for yachts, in which the protesters gathered partly burned documents taken from the Dnieper; perhaps it will be possible to discover the total cost of this megalomania. It was an open secret that Yanukovych appropriated huge sums of money from the public budget for construction of the residence. In addition, the president built himself a zoo, a palm house, a barn and other things necessary to perform the functions of the president. "Ordinary people don’t have an equal standard of living to the dogs living here," - commented an old man, standing near the lovely cottages for Caucasian Shepherds. Excitement mixes with disbelief. Control over the property was adopted by the Self-Defence of the Maidan, providing access to all those wishing to sightsee at the property. It has already been decided that all the personal belongings of Yanukovich will become the property of the nation.