Dateline: St. Petersburg, Day 2 – The Hermitage

St. Petersburg, Russian Federation
11 June 2009

I ended up going to the Hermitage today. That makes sounds like I was talked into going or something, which I wasn’t. But I wasn’t exactly set on going if no one else was. Evan and Jared were going, so I went with them.

18.0 mm || 1/2000 || f/4.0 || ISO200 || NIKON D70
St. Petersburg, Saint Petersburg Federal City, Russia

In general, I’m not what you would call an art museum person. And I generally tend to steer away from them unless the museum is of utmost importance. But my friend Staples said that the Hermitage was pretty cool and worth seeing. And he was right. It also helped that I was able to finagle my way in for free as a student (I actually didn’t have my student ID card, but they accepted my drivers license instead…probably not realizing what it was).

Word of warning about the Hermitage. Do not, under any circumstances, underestimate its size. It’s freaking huge! I did not realize this before going in.

25.0 mm || 1/1000 || f/7.1 || ISO200 || NIKON D70
St. Petersburg, Saint Petersburg Federal City, Russia

Anyway, it way huge. Pretty cool. Definitely worth seeing, even if you have too pay. You name the artist, and they are probably there: Picaso, Rembrandt, Monet and Manet. This list goes on. There’s also a neat collection of Egyptian artifacts that’s worth finding.

I picked up some postcards and wrote a couple notes to people back home1.

18.0 mm || 1/500 || f/7.1 || ISO200 || NIKON D70
St. Petersburg, Saint Petersburg Federal City, Russia

We headed back to the hostel, walking half the way and riding the metro the other half. I made a quick stop at the grocery store for some essentials (eggs, bread, yogurt, beer), then on to an evening of relaxation and making plans for the next few days.

  1. If you want a postcard too, send me an email with your address and I’ll see what I can do 

Updated Itinerary

Progess is being made! I’m calling this Itinerary v0.2. It appears that the only country that will need a visa is Russia. Thus, I’m going to going to start my travels there since it will have to be the most planned part of this trip. I talked with Jeff last night, as he had traveled to Russia several years ago, and got some good information on places to go. I’m hoping to have trip start and end dates locked down and reserved by the end of March, along with all the Russian parts locked down and reserved. 

I also talked with Quinn and Charlie, both of whom have indicated they would at least be interested in doing some traveling with me as well. I have calls in to Katelyn and Erin, both of whom have been and are currently in Turkey, respecitvely.

Below is a list of places that I think I would like to visit, in roughtly the order that I would visit them. I’ve also added notes (mostly to myself) about things I’d like to do there. I think this seems like a more managable list than previously. I’m also trying to setup a framework of things to do, however still allow the trip to progress organically.

  • Day 1: 
    Seattle, Washington 
    Dulles, Washington, DC
  • Airplane/10 hrs/UA964
  • Day 2: Moscow, Russia12
    • Red Square
    • The Kremlin
    • GUM
  • Airplane/1.25 hrs/$60 USD/Rossiya – Russian Airlines3
  • Day 6: St. Petersburg, Russia45
  • Bus/6 hrs/€30 ($40 USD)/EuroLines
  • Day 10: Tallin, Estonia6
  • France:
    • Paris, France (Paris Air Show – 15 to 21 June 2009)
    • Toulouse, France7
    • La Barre, France8
    • Vélizy, France9
    • Bidos, France 10
  • Italy:
    • Rome, Italy
    • Venice, Italy
    • Grottaglie, Italy11
    • Agnone, Italy12
  • Switzerland
    • Arbon, Switzerland
    • Interlaken, Switzerland13
  • Austria
  • Czech Republic
  • Poland
  • Ukraine
    • I’ve heard you can visit Chernobyl…could be cool.
  • Hungary
  • Turkey
  • Germany -> Seattle (UA8718)


  • Sweden14
  • Denmark->Seattle (UA9394)
  • Romania
  • Macedonia
  1. http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/destinations/east/moscow.htm 

  2. http://www.lonelyplanet.com/russia/moscow/sights 

  3. http://www.anywayanyday.ru/en/ 

  4. http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/destinations/east/petersbu.htm 

  5. http://www.lonelyplanet.com/russia/st-petersburg/sights 

  6. http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/destinations/scan/tallinn.htm 

  7. 787 Production Stop: Groupe Latécoère 

  8. Birthplace of Jean-Luc Picard 

  9. 787 Production Stop: Messier-Dowty 

  10. 787 Production Stop: Messier-Dowty 

  11. 787 Production Stop: http://www.seattlepi.com/business/275606_italy28.html 

  12. We visited Agnone a couple of years, it’s where my maternal great-grandfather was born, and  I’ve wanted to return here to just spend a few days hanging out 

  13. I’ve heard this is a must 

  14. 787 Production Stop: Saab