I met this couple at Bagrati Cathedral overlooking the city of Kutaisi. After taking this picture I stopped and asked them if they would like a copy of it. The couple were travelling from New Zealand and hadn’t brought a camera that day. They seemed really happy to receive the photos. We exchanged emails and started talking. The woman in the photo is. currently developing an app that connects charities with volunteers. A link to the website can be found at https://letscollaborate.co.nz. Meeting fascinating people like this is what makes travelling so worthwhile.
On the first night, I met an English brother and sister that were also travelling in Georgia for the first time. The brother was a Zoology student at Newcastle University and had a keen interest in discovering amphibious wildlife in the Rioni River that runs through Kutaisi. One night he asked if I would like to join him for a late night frog and newt hunt. Apparently, the newt he was looking for is native only to Georgia and would be a magnificent find. Unfortunately for him, he only managed to find this small frog. I was pretty made up. That morning when I woke, the last thing I would have expected to do that day was to go searching for frogs in the dark. It is another reason why travel is so exciting, you never quite know how your day will go.
These are my first attempts at street photography at night. The best bit of equipment I have purchased recently is the tripod that I use for my camera. It makes such a difference. Tbilisi is a city that comes to life when the sun sets. Visiting at Christmas was magical. Liberty Square becomes a huge Christmas tree with lights everywhere. Prices in the Capital are slightly higher that Kutaisi but it is still a cheap place to travel.
On a tour to Jvari Monastery, there are a few very friendly street dogs that have become conditioned to approach tourists in the hope for food. This little beauty looked just like a fox. I really like how the woman who is stroking the dog has matching colour hair as the dog. The dogs in Georgia seem to be treated fairly well considering how many of them are on the streets. Jvari Monastery is definitely worth a visit if you are staying in Tbilisi.
The first picture is of the house where Stalin was raised as a child. The second is a statue of the man. To be honest, my knowledge of this Soviet Union leader was fairly patchy before visiting. His home town of Gori is effectively a large memorial to Stalin. He is celebrated with a muesuem and countless statues. I felt uneasy about visiting a celebratory site for such a controversial figure. At one point Stalin was working in harmony with the allied effort to rid the world of Hitler and Nazi Germany. There are plenty of photographs of Stalin with Winston Churchill during the war.
On the other hand, he was responsible for the oppression and death of millions of people in Gulags in the Soviet Union. He is certainly the most famous Georgian and for many Georgians, they speak about him with pride. Regardless of your views, it was interesting to see and I certainly learnt a great deal about the history of Georgia and the Soviet Union.
When I first saw this guy pointing a rifle at me, I thought I was in trouble. It turns out he was ‘innocently’ shooting pidgeons. I’m not too sure if he was doing it for fun or to eat them. Either way, it’s not every day you encounter a guy with an air-rifle, shooting just above where you’re walking.
The market in Kutaisi isn’t yourn bog standard tourist market that sells fake watches and generic clutter. This is where locals go to buy good at the best prices. Some of the freshest and most colourful vegetables I’ve ever seen.
For more pictures from my travells you can visit my instagram @adventurewithadam