Yaroslavl--July 31, 2005--Rybinsk Lock, Blini Feast, Church of St. Elijah the Prophet, Transfiguration Monastery, Folk Group Performance, Museum of Time and Music


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We passed the statue of Mother Volga (67) and entered the Rybinsk Lock (69-83) in mid-morning.  It is the deepest we traversed, 54 feet in depth. Clearing the lock took about half an hour.


In the late morning, the ship put on a spread of Russian Blini with caviar and vodka, accompanied by a band of merry musicians (85-90).


In late afternoon, we reached Yaroslavl, a charming city founded in 1010.  It is the oldest city on the Volga and plans to support its 1,000th anniversary in five years with much hoopla.  In 1598, Yaroslavl actually served for a time as the capital of Russia.


We first visited the Church of St. Elijah the Prophet (92-99), This, at one time, was a private church for a wealthy merchant family in town.  However, when Catherine the Great visited the church, she decreed that all surrounding buildings should be razed to give the church more visibility.  This resulted in the loss of many homes including the mansion of the merchant family owning the church.  The icons in this church were particularly beautiful (94, 98).


From there, we were off to the Transfiguration Monastery (100-113).  For a small fee, it was possible to access the belfry, which was a challenging climb on this rainy day.  However, once aloft, the views of the city were excellent (109-113).  The bear, Masha, in photos 103-107, resides in the monastery.  She was brought there as a cub by young children who discovered her mother had been killed.  She put on quite a few tricks when prompted by her handler but could also be ferocious when surprised (106).


From the monastery, we traveled to an auditorium in town to hear a concert of the Folk Ensemble Skomoroshina (114-120) who were very good as had been the musicians at the earlier church visit (99).


The final stop of the day was an evening visit to the Museum of Time and Music (121-134), in the former home of a German composer.  It contains numerous musical instruments and clocks, plus a collection of irons. All had a good time during the visit.

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