Tickets for excursions in Kislovodsk are sold everywhere. Especially a lot of outlets at the entrance to the main resort park and the narzan gallery - the place through which one way or another passes (sometimes several times a day), the majority of resort visitors, regardless of whether they stopped at a sanatorium, hotel or in a private sector.
“Just don't take the tickets anywhere,” the landlady warned. - It happens that they forget at the bus stop.
A lurid booth, a shabby plastic table and a frozen seller - yesterday’s prose, nevertheless firmly rooted in the Kislovodsk sightseeing market. Such “masterpieces of architecture” in the city - every twenty meters, and it is useless to look for stylish kiosks like Sochi ones. And every season we make remarks to “domestic” excursionists for every busy meter of the embankment or paper fringe of announcements on the stand ... But here we have the coveted ticket.
- Where is it more convenient to pick you up - from the temple or on the colonnade? - the implementer politely asks, prudently specifying my contact phone number.
Such hospitality is the exception rather than the rule. In the corner of the colonnade of sightseeing buses for two, but the drivers of both are sent to ... a stop to the cashier. Instead of greeting, an unsmiling woman mutters something unintelligible and sends it back. Somehow I managed to figure it out, so many passengers crammed into the passenger compartment that some had to curl up in the minibus aisle. This is another local peculiarity of doing business: in this way, tourists are taken to a general assembly point, to St. Nicholas Cathedral. Here you have to rush again in search of your transport, because the guides do not consider it necessary to get out of the car, call the company and the travel route.
In my distant childhood, back in the times of the Soviet Union, there were also two collection points in Sochi - the area of the railway station and at the central entrance to the Riviera Park. Since then, much has changed, and, for example, vacationers in the sanatorium "Green Grove" refuse to buy vouchers if the bus does not drive directly to the hull on the hill. Involuntarily think: Is it really that the people in Sochi are driving too demanding and fucking? In Kislovodsk, they would have to be re-educated ...
As the two snowflakes differ between each other, so are the "raisins" (or "chips") in Sochi and Kislovodsk. The most popular phenomenon among the excursionists in Sochi is the symbiosis of the steering and the microphone, that is, the driver and the guide in one person. In Kislovodsk out of the situation differently. Here the guide and the photographer unite: according to the Soviet tradition, the desire for group shots is strong.
- Please settle down in a semicircle! - You will hear this magic phrase both at the foot of the Ring mountain, and on the funicular in the Adyr-Suu gorge, and on the top of the Cheget mountain ...
It seems that the price is low - 50 rubles for a photo, and they will make it to you only if you order, but still the pocket of the resort attendant during the time of even a short vacation will save 400 rubles in rubles.
Compared with academic, scientifically verified texts of Sochi guides, the stories of Kislovodists seem to be a living fairy-tale narrative. Sometimes even too lively, not burdened with dates and historical facts.
“These round balls are everywhere in Kislovodsk,” Zinaida Nikolayevna, microphone ruler in our group, automatically says.
It is she who describes spherical thuyu directly. Well, let it be, what can not be said about parking ... In Sochi, too, then the lions will be delivered to the yew-boxwood grove, then the mosquito painters will appear. But definitely not boring!
Another significant difference between the two resorts. Nature itself helps our popularity by inventing intricate caves and emerald canyons with waterfalls and springs. And in the Kislovodsk forest-steppe even the pine forest is planted by human hands - a gigantic, painstaking work.
But even in such limited scenery there is where to turn fantasy. And here you are, standing by a rock small by the Sochi standards, believe that it resembles a medieval castle in its outlines. Moreover, imagination tells us that it was from that balcony that a rejected young man rushed into the river three hundred years ago. Especially vividly appears jigit, directing the horse under the arches of Mount Ring. And the heart stops waiting for a minute: what if it hooks with a spear or stirrups? ...
It is up to us, the Sochi residents, to learn from our love for our land, patriotism and irrepressible fantasy from our North Caucasian colleagues. Then the paradise of paradise - the Black Sea resort of Sochi - will play with new colors and will enjoy even more love.