We’re starting to get emails about this, so I decided to address it. I am Russian but I am also at least a quarter Ukrainian. My maternal grandfather was from Lviv. My maiden name comes from Poltava, a city in central Ukraine. My paternal great grandparents spoke pidgin, which is a farmer dialect that was a mix of Russian and Ukrainian particular to our general area.
A lot of my childhood friends were in the same boat, with family spread out through the region. There are generational ties across Pontic steppe that go back hundreds of years.
My father is an hour from Ukrainian border on the Russian side. His cousins are in Ukraine somewhere. He probably knows where they are; I don’t. I know we visited them once, but I was very young and it’s murky.
This is a war that didn’t have to happen. Russia is shelling airports. People are dying. Refugees are flooding the borders. I am having to censor myself here, because again, family is still over there. I’ve got nothing this morning except for anger, helplessness, and painful flashbacks. Once you see tanks rolling through a city, it’s not something you forget.
When something like this happens, there will be comments from people expressing sympathy, comments from people who are not happy with what’s written above for various reasons, and comments from people who have read a little bit about this and decided they are qualified to form an expert opinion.
I don’t have the capacity to deal with any of it. I am not able to have a rational conversation about this right now. I am very angry and very upset.
So, I ask for your understanding during this difficult time. Thank you for your sympathy and well wishes. I truly appreciate them.
We are going to proceed as usual with the innkeeper tomorrow.