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Vladivostok, Russia – More Tigers, Warships, and Love..


Vladivostok, Russia – More Tigers, Warships, and Love..

Was not joking when I said people here in Vladivostok love their tigers!  This man at the motorcycle club said he paid $2000 to have this one permanently printed on his skin!  Awesome work I must say.. I might consider that one for myself..  what do ya think.. ?  😉

So it’s another day in the life of Sherri Jo in Russia.. it’s a tough life too.. ha!  I am loving Russia so much..  After several weeks on Asian food, one thing I love the most here is the food.. But also the culture in general.. So many old buildings and history here..  Walter and I make our way around town organizing bits and pieces.

I didn’t notice this, but Walter did..  a sign for Australian food!

I know the word on top (Cafe) – that’s easy enough.. Under that is “Australian”.. which i would have worked out if I had stopped walking and stared at the sign, and sounded it out slowly..

And interesting they print “Country Fried Chicken” in English, and I quite honestly don’t associate such a meal with Australia.  Granted Australia has a big KENTUCKY FRIED CHICKEN culture (God knows why..?), which is technically American culture.

I am so happy with Russian food, that I will stick with that for now.. (Granted I did have a couple glasses of South Australian wine at dinner a couple nights ago…well you gotta do what you gotta do.. support SA!!)

Actually Walter has got me onto a Russian beer that I quite like.. I am not much of a beer drinker at all… the odd Coopers Sparkling Ale when in the mood.

But it’s been so hot and humid here, this one goes down really well.. it’s light with a bit of lime flavor, which I don’t think I would have ordered on my own..

That’s another good thing about having Walter around.. He’s been to Russia many times, and besides being able to organize things speaking their language (this is a massive plus!!), he knows the food and drink, and gets me to try things that I would have never known what they are..

One of my goals today was to try to organize a way to experience the tiger conservation efforts in this country (being one of the tiny few places on this planet that tigers still live in the wild..)

We head over to an office based here called THE PHEONIX FUND.  They agreed to meet with us, and I came along armed with some newsletters and photos from my favorite rescue center in Indiana, the EXOTIC FELINE RESCUE CENTER.  If you haven’t seen from my website, the address is

The directors at Pheonix didn’t speak English, however the girls do.. they showed us what they do and the challenges they have ahead.  Have a look at their site, they have done a lot for the tigers and include some amazing video..

They are connected with WWF, WCS, even Dreamworld in Queensland!  There really seems to be hope for the wild tigers after seeing what I did today… not like problem solved, but an amazing team who have already made progress.  If you have a love of wildlife and tigers like I do,  both websites mentioned above take donations and could really use your help!  I see these things online as well, but it was great to see conservation in action today..

Moving on in my day in the life in Russia, we head over to another office to see how we an get out to wild tiger country if possible..
In yet other office, it was time for ABC radio Adelaide Carole Whitelock’s show to call in for a progress report.
I pop outside to take the call..
Busy day!!  It’s amazing how stagnant we could be as we are not actually on the road yet.. However, every day is completely full!
Back out to organize wireless modems for our computers, banking etc.
Time to get out to the Iron Angels motorcycle club to check on the bike..
Hey!!  My new big fat Michelin Desert Tires are on!!  Lord have Mercy, they look mean.. should I be nervous!?  Umm.. I just won’t look at them too long..
Now, it’s an oil change too..
Those little dead fishes are still hanging ’round….
I like the mechanic here.. I can’t have a conversation with the man, but doesn’t seem to matter… beside that, he’s too cute in those overalls!
When he was finished, Walter asks him for the bill for me, and he wouldn’t take any money!!   I can’t believe it.. they did a lot of work for me.. and how do they survive if they don’t get paid??
Walter explains this is very typical in Russia.  It is so common for them to bend over backwards and not charge anything..
Love the Iron Angels Club – and they did earn a position on my pannier!!

 While hanging around the club I noticed another tiger!  This little guy was hanging around the other day as well.  Not sure who he belongs to, but he’s there all day entertaining himself.. I tried to say hello to him, he just puts his head down, and marches away like a soldier!!  Too cute.

Finally got him to stop so I could take a photo of his tiger.. have a look. He is just hating it…”take the photo lady and piss off!”
He likes Walter well enough, but Walter speaks Russian, so he is acceptable..  🙁
Oops, there he goes again.. and he is NOT going to look at me!! 
So!  I have a plan, kids love to see themselves in a photo, so I decide to show him the photos I have taken of him and around the club.
It did the trick!!  He can smile!!  I am not the crazy foreign lady anymore!!

So much for the shy kid!!
Now he’s telling ME when to take photos of him!!
I must have “HAD” to take a couple hundred photos of him..  deleted most of them obviously.
All right little Motorcycle kid.. I give up.. let’s go back outside.
Still giving me the clicking noise so I will keep taking photos.. oh well I tried to escape!
Finally got him to give up with a little game of soccer in the yard with yet another tiger… a plastic bottle.. Shew!
How’s my bike doing anyway?
Lookin’ good!  Can’t quite say the same for the little fishes!!
All finished, pack up and head back into town and try to track down some dinner.
We try some local food on the beach, and when we  pulled up, the sight of all those warships off shore really struck me!!

And even a couple submarines!  Wowee, they look cool, not sure I’ve ever seen such a line up of border protection like this before.. is somebody coming for dinner?

There are more guns ready to fire here than I expected!!  Sorry that was really bad…. couldn’t help myself!  Looks like love and war are in harmony here in Russia..  😉
Photo credit to:  Walter Colebatch
(Somebody hijacked my camera at this stage.. there’s more, but you’ll have to check his site for those..  😉 

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Originally from America. Proud citizen of Australia. Currently riding my motorcycle around the world. 44 countries so far and counting. ;-)


  • July 22, 2010

    Sherri Jo… Bravo !! We need more pics like the 2nd one down !! Colebatch with an IKEA "Man Bag" !! That's a really "gnarly adventurer" look…Thanks a million… Priceless…

  • Paul
    December 23, 2013

    Hi Guys, Planing a ride from Vladivostok to Europe next May 2014, My friend Heiko from Germany who I met in Indonesia said you may help out with a Business Visa sponsor, In New Zealand at the moment.


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