Dean O'Brien's Blog

There are none so blind as those that cannot see….

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It is a hot day in Kyiv.  I’m waiting in one of the main restaurants just off Khreschatyk Street for my fixer to turn up.  I don’t mind the wait though.  I order a coffee and await her arrival.

I’m a great people watcher and casually observe the girls on the table opposite me constantly checking their smart phones and iPads.  My poor understanding of the Russian language stops any attempt at eaves dropping.  I gather they are waiting for a date and sure enough a rather ‘heavy set’ American eventually turns up.  One of the women is a translator and makes the introductions.  This is an all too familiar scene here.  The date starts off fairly well with a nice meal, that is until the phone rings.  The translator explains to the American that his date must leave as her mother is ill and the date is cut short.  They both leave, leaving him to pick up the bill.

This is common practice to start the snowball rolling.  When dating through an agency you cannot supply your own translator.  It must be one of the agencies, which naturally comes at an extra premium.  So now the American has to arrange another date (at another fee), pick up another restaurant bill, pay the travel expenses to and from the meeting place (for his date) and yes you’ve guessed it, pay for another translator.

Yes indeed.  As the old saying goes ‘there are none so blind as those that cannot see’….

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Written by Dean O'Brien

July 30, 2012 at 11:18 pm

Posted in Ukraine

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