25 February 2018

Working on the Chernobyl zone railway

You'd think on a day where I saw four moose in the wild, and walked on a frozen lake for the first time, they'd pretty much be the high points of the day?  Normally, I'd agree, but not this day.

It was the first time I've visited the villages at the northern part of the Chernobyl zone (first time we've ever had time in the schedule with the extra day in the zone).  If that wasn't special enough, on the way back we saw some railway maintenance workers working on the line out of Chernobyl Nuclear Power Station.

They were given us some curious "WTF" looks, but they waved back, and seemed friendly.

It wasn't long before they'd given us their tools to see if we could do their job of tightening up the bolts - I failed - too much of a wimp.  They had a bloody tough job, in sub-zero conditions, yet they all seemed happy.

Apparently we were the first foreigners they'd ever met, which given they were all around 50 years old was quite something.

Most of the workers in the zone barely give tourists a second look (or even a first one), which, just like the time I met one of the re-settlers, made this chance meeting all the more special.

After a few selfies (their idea!) we all shook hands and went on about our days.

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