I remember last May, when my mom and I had just completed the first week of camp for the summer: Shpola Orphanage Kids Camp. After a wonderful week of being with the children, hearing their stories, and building relationships, we realized that one physical item they were in dire need of was decent shoes. Already being in Ukraine, we quickly realized that our only option to solve this problem for upcoming camps was to buy shoes in Ukraine. Initially, we were happy about this fact -- Ukrainian shoes would be much cheaper than ones bought in the USA, and then we wouldn't have to lug them all the way across the world with our already limited luggage space.
I admit, visiting Ukraine in winter can be a bit tricky. Certainly, it is not for anyone unaccustomed to dealing with ice and snow and as a native Minnesotan, I like to think I can handle harsh winter weather. Plus, last January’s trip was full of snowy fun and navigating the roads was not a problem. So far, it’s been a different story in 2018.