A cloudy, rainy day at JFK as many of our excited clients drifted in to gate 3 for the flight to Vienna and then to our tour in Kharkov. However, once
we all gather at the hotel on the 25th, we will number 25. It is sure to be a tour to remember.
I always enjoy the interaction of all the clients upon first meeting. As individuals, they could not be more different – ages, occupations, home town and life
circumstance. Yet, since the mission is identical, bonding occurs very quickly. The mood is heightened once stories begin to circulate among those who have traveled
before and those who are on their maiden voyage. Questions abound and answers and opinions given.
I am reminded of returning from the Kiev Tour in February. We were picking up our luggage at the same airport when my friend, Paul gave me a hug
and said, “We came as strangers and leave as brothers”. This is exactly what happens each time. So what is it that binds us together? We have all dreamed,
some for years, to travel over the sea to hope to find love. It is this belief that there is someone special waiting thousands of miles away to share a smile and
a loving gaze to change one’s life forever that drives these men of good will to invest precious time and treasure.
So, now we all sit on a comfortable flight dreaming and hoping, many totally unaware of the fun and possibility that awaits all of us in the Ukraine
– a land blessed with beautiful women who long for a sincere, loving relationship.
It is amazing that these women are willing to leave their family, friends, occupations and belongings to travel to a foreign country with a man with whom they have
fallen in love. However, this scenario has occurred thousands of times in the past with overwhelming success. I sometimes wonder if the men would be willing to do
the same if the situation where reversed? Interesting.
Well, having the benefit of enjoying several tours as a client and a leader, I know what awaits them and it makes me smile. I think of the joy in the faces of the
clients who met that special lady and fell in love. I am eager to see how this plays out for these twenty two courageous men. I know that for each man who has taken
this giant step toward happiness, there are thousands who unfortunately will never follow. Such a pity.
It is interesting that I have been party to two other tours when a film crew accompanied us. I have also viewed many other attempts to document what we do to varying
degrees of success. Since we are dealing with human beings and relationships, there will, of course, be joy, heartache, the encouragement of future promise and occasional
dejection. This is the nature of matters of the heart, no matter where it occurs.
And so now we sleep and dream at 600 miles per hour. We will awake in Vienna and there will be much more to our story.
Well, we tumbled off the flight and searched for our luggage. Unfortunately, two of us didn’t find it, but that’s life. Believe it or not, one of the
guys had a beautiful lady waiting for him at the airport! She traveled to the hotel with us and even joined us at the orientation later. I have never witnessed this
After checking in at a very comfortable hotel we settled in to our rooms and joined the orientation at 6PM. The challenge was to stay awake until later that evening
to adjust to the time difference (they are 7 hours ahead of us).
The staff carefully discussed the critical details that everyone needed to know. Then we were joined by a dozen lovely interpreters who would be with us while we
are in Kharkov Ukraine. Each city will have a fresh group, of course. I cannot stress how important they are to our success. The majority
of the ladies only speak Russian, so their services are critical. Fortunately, they were very accommodating and skilled. Their presence at the social the next day
will be appreciated by all the clients. Of course, they will be available during the upcoming dates.
As all of us are very tired, it was an early evening, although some took advantage of the 24 hour bar in the lobby! Everyone is very excited for the social on Saturday.
Those that are new to AFA tours are wondering what awaits them. Those of us who have enjoyed it previously just smile as we know how exciting it will
Wow! What a great day. We started out hanging out in the hotel office while the guys lined up dates and we prepared for the social – very busy. At 4 PM we boarded
the bus and headed downtown to a very cool nightclub called Compass – amazing. It was decorated in a very contemporary fashion with a lighted dance floor. There
were 22 guys and over 300 beautiful ladies waiting for us. Now those are odds any guy would appreciate. As a matter of fact the AFA staff bussed
in 30 ladies from Poltava Ukraine as they were concerned that they might miss the social when we travel there! The champagne flowed and the
dance floor was packed. The biggest problem the guys faced was the overload of ladies. Who should I talk to? Many tables had 6-10 ladies just waiting for one of us
to join them.
As the evening drew to a close, lots of guys had lined up dates for later on and for Sunday, yours truly included. Some had as many as three for the day. Again, I
believe the biggest challenge they faced was who among the lovely ladies held the most interest for them. It is truly sensory overload.
If you have not availed yourself of one of these tours, what is holding you back? There are many Ukrainian Tours, and Latin America Tours,
as well as Asian Tours for the rest of the year just waiting for you. Personally this is my sixth tour, and I assure you I will
Well, now it is Sunday, and the weather is golden. We are all looking forward to our dates and you will get a complete report soon. There will be many stories –
some glorious, a few perhaps disappointing or humorous, but that’s life. I hope all is well where you are (you should be here with us!)
Ah, Sunday in the Ukraine. Many citizens must work on Saturday, so this day is special to families and others. However, that does not stop our clients from setting
up dates from the social last night or calls made by the staff to other ladies in our catalog and on the site.
At the hotel, it is rare to see a guy enjoying a cup of coffee and having a conversation about how great the social was. Everyone seems to be busy on dates. It’s
fun to listen to the many stories, most just fine, some not so much. But that’s the way it goes. There is plenty of opportunity, but at the end of the day we
are all responsible for our own happiness. It’s a bit of carpe diem. Most of the guys have taken advantage of what is readily available.
What is interesting is that preconceived expectations do not always match up with reality, once on tour. Also, the process enables guys to learn much about themselves
and what is really important. Often it is not a 23 year old “super model”, but a good hearted lady who only wants to make the right man happy. Don’t
misunderstand, beauty abounds and appears to endure for many years. It’s only an observation you may wish to consider.
And so it goes. We now have one city and social under our belt and head for Poltava early Monday morning. Since the social will be on Monday evening, it will be a
bit hectic. There will be surely more tomorrow. Again, we all wish you were here with us to enjoy this wonderful experience.
An early morning as everyone checks out, has breakfast (complimentary) and piles on the bus for the two hour ride to Poltava. Kharkov
is a large, busy city and very exciting. Poltava is much smaller and provincial. It is lovely with tree lined streets. We will walk everywhere easily. The Palazzo
hotel is very comfortable and accommodating. However, there will be a large number of ladies at the social. AFA has a permanent office here and a great staff.
The guys will discover a whole new experience and a wide range of opportunities. Those that did not find what they sought in Kharkov, may find it in Poltava, or even
at the Sumy Ukraine Tour later this week. That’s what is so great about these tours. No matter what your taste may be – an urban environment
or perhaps a quieter town, it is all here.
What is always interesting as far as the group is concerned is that some guys find a lady they are really interested in to the point where they wish to stay and not
continue to the next city. This is, of course, their choice although we recommend that they continue in order to meet as many ladies as possible. So, off we go in
a nice bus for a pleasant ride to Poltava. These trips are a lot of fun as the guys trade stories and good-natured kidding abounds. The staff provides encouraging
and useful comments on the bus microphone as we roll through the beautiful Ukrainian countryside. I can’t help thinking of rural Pennsylvania or the Midwest.
When we arrive at the Palazzo (a lovely and accommodating hotel) at noon, we tumble off with our luggage and check in. A nice walking tour is scheduled for those
At four we meet the interpreters – lovely young ladies who are English students and eager to help. Then it is off to the social at the excellent nightclub,
the Podium – a brief walk from the hotel.
As in Kharkov, there are hundreds of lovely ladies to meet, dance with and hopefully date. This could occur after the four hour social or the next day. Many men took
advantage of this, of course. The biggest problem is deciding who to speak with! I found myself lingering afterwards with a lovely lady I had been dancing with and
set up what turned out to be a 10 hour date the next day. I was truly not alone.
And so with a second social under our belts and our confidence increased we head back to our comfortable rooms for a good night’s rest – we will need