Viktoriia Zhuhan Profile picture
Apr 6 16 tweets 13 min read
1/ Going to #Kyiv first time since 20 Feb 2022.

#Ukraine will never be the same as before #Russia full scale #war, so during this comeback trip, I will share my impressions about dramatic and subtle changes that I see on every corner.

Join me on this journey in this thread!
2/ First hours of drive, we’re on a very good, European quality, yet unfinished, highway. New roads across the country was perhaps the last ambitious pre-war project by president #Zelenskyy.
It’s hard to grasp that #Ukraine will have to start from scratch once the #war is over.
3/ #Vinnytsia region central Ukraine. Russia attacked it with rockets just last night, but I see a granny and a little boy outside, painting their fence as we’re driving by.

Can’t stop to ask about their views on the future, but it’s obvious they see one.

#Kyiv #PutinsWar
4/ As we approach #Kyiv from south, the number of tractors in the fields doesn’t decrease.

Nothing special tor #Ukraine in April if not the new role of tractors in this war: pulling away broken #Russian tanks.

Seeing a tractor now = seeing a legend

5/ #Kyiv is empty and quiet. Feels almost like a covid lockdown with at least one difference: most windows are dark.

People aren’t “staying home” 2020 style, they’ve left homes like in 2022.

And of course #checkpoints and fortifications. But that’s for amother tweet.

6/ I thought I’d never ever come to Kyiv again.

A feeling like when someone’s in your family been missing and you think they’re gone forever… but then they’re found alive.

#Kyiv is alive, and so am I.

#Russian #UkraineWar
7/ Went to my apartment in the suburbs of #Kyiv. Everything is Ok. My car was parked where I left it, it drives. 2 stray dogs that lived near our bloc before the war are fine, a black cat that we had now got a new friend - another black cat.

Haven’t been this happy in 2 months.
8/ All my body and soul told me to stay there even though I had to pack some necessities and leave as it’s not safe to live there yet.

Can’t imagine what it felt like for other people who had to flee their homes under the shelling.

#Kyiv #war
9/ Those who stayed in #Kyiv say the number of #checkpoints is decreasing.

Those who just arrived like me are shocked to drive through that.

You can see “new arrivals” because we still use turn signals when we change lanes to fit through the checkpoints.

10/ Those who stayed in #Kyiv say today traffic was two times bigger than yesterday.

It’s obvious more people are returning and it’s a big question whether the city can cope.

#Gas is still sold 20 L per person in many places, hard to know which stations now operate.
11/ Yesterday I thought I gained a new skill of driving through checkpoints & fortifications in #Kyiv

Today I had to learn doing that in a #traffic jam.

Does this already count as extreme #driving or not yet?

12/ Air raid #siren is a sound you can never get used to.

I know it’s meant to be that way to save me. I’m thankful for it.

But Mom says my dog runs to the corridor whenever he hears the siren. Other people’s pets do the same, though no one trained them to.
13/ Monument in central #Kyiv to a Soviet partisan Zoya Kosmodemyanskaya who was executed by the #Nazis in 1941.

Do I have to draw historical parallels or you got your own?

Been 2 this park multiple times before but can’t unsee the similarity to #RussianWarCrimes in Ukraine now Image
14/ At dusk, the lamp in a corridor of a residential bloc is off, male silhouette approaches you & the only detail you see is a gun hanging by his side.

You remind yourself that #Kyiv isn’t occupied by Russians, that was just a #Ukrainian #soldier and he probably lives here.
15/ Kyiv people say situation with fuel stabilised.

So today I was at three stations:

❌ one sold diesel, no gas
❌ another sold gas on coupons
✅ the last one sold gas but only for cash

And many places sell only 20L at a time & won’t fill a plastic canister

16/ Everyone in #Kyiv takes me to a “just reopened” coffee takeaway kiosk.

Not that coffee has ever been a thing in #Ukraine’s capital city.

But right now it’s seen as a sign of economic revival.
#economy #war #RussiaUkraineWar

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