Tuesday – 19 June 2007


The World Stamp Exhibition Opens. 


Earl’s up early to get going.  Fried up some tomatoes and eggs with cheese for breakfast.  The rest of the tourists are not up yet. 


The stamp show is right across the street from St. Isaac's Cathedral

St. Isaac's Cathedral



There’s a wind ensemble playing in costume and other costumed personages standing around so one can get their pictures taken with them. 


Wind Ensemble



Otherwise not much to do.  Earl met a couple of friends and then we walked back to the hostel. 


At Earl's frames

We had lunch next door at a Turkish buffet where one can buy food by weight.  Heard that all the hotels are sold out.  One of Earl’s friends had to stay at a B&B.  He had to climb five flights of stairs and the hot water was iffy.


The exhibition hall used to have horse shows hence the statue


Went back to the show and afterwards walked over to see the Bronze Horseman Sculpture that Catherine II had commissioned to honor Peter the Great.  The sculpture took 12 years to complete and nearly ended in disaster when the casting cracked.  The 1,600 ton granite rock that supports it took nine months to transport from the Gulf of Finland.  The sculpture gets its name from a Pushkin epic poem where protagonist loses his mind and fiancee during the great flood of 1824 and imagines that the statue comes to life.



Across the empty square

Yevgeny ran and seemed to hear

Great, swelling, mighty peals of thunder

And feel the pavement quaking under

A horse’s heavy hoofs.  For there,

Behind him, to the darkness wedded,

Lit by the moon’s pale ray and slight,

One hand in warning raised, the dreaded

Bronze Horsement galloped through the night…



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