And then I ran in to a “powwow” in Sevastopol

So one of the great things about being in a country where you don’t understand the language and cannot figure anything out is that, well, you don’t understand anything and cannot figure it out. Sometimes ignorance really is bliss. And then there was tonight on the Sevastopol waterfront. It is getting late on a Friday night here and the buskers are out in force. There were folks singing and dancing, a five-piece playing big-band and some women spinning fire. It was all good.


And then, just before we made it back to our hotel, we discovered the "powwow" going on. It was absolutely dumbfounding. A group of guys with a pretty serious sound system set up and speaking in Russian also just happened to be dressed in "traditional" feathers and face paint. Sorry the photo sucks but it was dark and I didn’t have my better camera with me.


We just stood there, pretty much in shock, seeing this unfolding before our eyes. And, best as I can tell, this certainly wasn’t the first time they’ve put on this show.

Maybe I shouldn’t be so surprised. I’m sure that there are buskers all over the world doing things that are just plain wrong. But this one really did give me pause. Maybe I’m getting soft…

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.


  1. Former USSR has a pretty solid understanding of United States history… as something that played out between cowboys and Indians. Quite amusing at times, other times just… wow. Welcome to that particular experience!

  2. Saw a similar thing at Legoland in Denmark!

    It was not a pow wow, but they had a teepee set up and an Indian chief. Fire burning, and the kids could get a piece of bread, put it on a stick, and roast it over the campfire.

    The kids loved it, my wife and I thought it was funny to run in to an Indian encampment in Billund in the middle of Denmark…

    ‘Chief Longears is almost synonymous with LEGOREDO Town at LEGOLAND Billund. In the chief’s Indian village there is always room for a new member of the tribe – and there is always a fire ready for baking campfire bread. This attraction is very popular with children and their families.’

  3. Actually, there is a long-standing tradition of shamanism in Eastern Russia (Siberia) and there are a lot of cultural relations between those practices and certain Native American ones. My guess is that the link is via the Cossack traditions, not the American West.

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