Last Saturday, 4 July, we decided to go to Užhorod and Mukačevo (at least, that's what we told them at the border -- no really, that's where we went) -- disappearing and freaking out my mom (sorry again, Mom!). We visited and stayed for 3 nights with one of my most top top favorite Rusyn activists, who is also an excellent hiker-tourist. Part of his theory is that this is the way we can create converts to Rusyn activism: through hiking in the Carpathians -- I can't disagree! He set a good pace with at least 45 pounds on his back and we did quite a few miles with a 600+ meter difference in altitude from start to finish, in the area I've marked on the map:
View Polonina in a larger map
I'll post more later, because in 3 days I took nearly 600 photos, but while hiking Monday afternoon, and while posing for what was to be a pleasant photo along the path, I put my hand on the ground and sliced it on a broken bottle that was hidden in the high grass thanks to some previous inconsiderate shepherd or tourist.
We took initial care to start helping the clotting by using a special type of leaf that was growing along the road, and then happened on several trucks carrying wild blueberry pickers (that was a huge treat! -- picking and eating fresh fresh fresh wild blueberries all day while hiking!) and one of the drivers had gauze bandages and some iodine. We can thank the training that young Pioneers had for the exceptionally good basic first aid care I received thanks to my hiking companions.
Tuesday morning when we got back to Slovakia, I went to the neighborhood trauma clinic, and they took another look at it and redressed it. I have to go back tomorrow morning, we'll see what happens/if it's infected/if I'll need stitches or something like that. I was advised to not tell them it happened in Ukraine so as to not create insurance problems, so here is kind of what the conversation went like:
Doctor: What happened?I won't get into the part of the discussion about me needing to get a tetanus shot.
Self: I was hiking and cut myself on a broken bottle.
Doctor: Why didn't you come sooner? You should have come within six hours.
Self: I was in the mountains hiking and we just got back.
Doctor: What mountains?
Self: In the hills. [gestures in general direction of some hills, which is not difficult to do in Prešov.]
But this really isn't so serious, and you're curious about Subcarpathia, so to hold you over until I can post more, here's a quick album to get some flava of the trip.