Across the White Lake (confused me terribly by constantly referring to it as the White Sea) which has to be the worst named lake in Russia, being an extremely nasty brown colour. It is not on the list of largest lakes either but you can't see the shores from the middle.
We dock at Goritzy and get the buses to the Kirillo Belozersky monastery, the oldest fortified monastery standing. Magnificent collection of 16th c icons.
We have local guide Natalya who is both interesting and pretty, and takes us to the local school. Although it is holiday time pupils have been drafted in to explain the education system to us, sing us a song and try to sell us some things they made in handicraft lessons. Capitalism is in safe hands here. It's not so bad as it sounds as the 15yr.old young lady who addressed our group was very articulate and spoke excellent English and it was very interesting with a lively q&a session.
The evening was much enlivened by an optional Vodka Tasting ($18). The session was led by 2 young ladies from the hotel management, Anastasia & Marinna, who I awarded honorary membership of the bteam after an astonishing display of their capacity for vodka, including how to drink shots without touching the glass with your hands.
We had all expected a serious lecture on the various types and and how to distinguish between the different types of potato. What we got was 2 laughing young ladies having fun and telling jokes.
The idea was to taste 6 types .....no spitting it out and large double shot glasses filled to the brim. When we'd done that they asked which was your favourite and kept refilling the glasses and proposing toasts so it all got very jolly...fortunately we had a handout with tasting notes so I have some vague idea about what we were doing. Actually no I don't. And my head hurt this morning but Anastasia and Marinna looked far to chirpy at breakfast.