With the sun continuing to shine graciously, our
remaining time on Bering Island was used to
saunter through the older part of Nikolskoe Village.
While our lovely 'home away from home' waited at anchor
in the distance, we took time to gather images of the
original village, a few buildings still occupied -
but peeling paint, rotting wood,
collapsing structures............all so
much more interesting and loaded with history
than the shiny, bright colored, new construction
up on the hillside.
The old refurbished building is the village museum which was
really interesting, and such a beautiful blue........
more history of Bering Island (the Commander Islands)can be found here.
Loved this mural depicting a girl riding an Orca whale....
Memorial to explorer Vitus Bering - he is actually buried on the island in another location.
And then there were the village boys...the Bering Boys
as I call them, whose lives on this small,
treeless, usually foggy, remote island
are so very different from what most kids
experience in this modern age. We wondered what
the future holds for them......there is no higher
education available unless they leave their
island. There is no real employment on the island,
it seems most of the 600 or so people live on
These boys were fascinated by our Zodiacs and loved
having a chance to take a ride. They were quiet
and very well behaved.
As our passengers were transported back and forth
to the ship, the expedition crew allowed groups of
boys to travel with us. Although we were unable to
converse with them - they spoke no English - just
seeing their joyful expressions and hearing their
whispers to each other, we knew they were having
the time of their lives. Looking back and viewing
their island from the ocean must have been exciting.
Expedition crew member, Jamie, taking the boys for a ride.
These last two images, the boys silhouetted in the late
afternoon sun of a beautiful day at the shore..............
....and the metal sculpture of the welcoming, or perhaps
saying 'goodbye', angel ~ is how I will remember my
visit to fascinating Bering Island..............
Next time: Return to Petropavlovsk, disembarkation, and flying across Siberia to Moscow.