On the Seagull Express riding across Ukraine. Odessa to Kharkiv in 14 hours. / by Cyrus

On the Seagull Express riding across #Ukraine. #Odessa to #Kharkiv in 17 hours. #travel #train #soviet #nature At the time I took this photo we were just settling into our first class cabin on a train across Ukraine. Indulging in a touch of luxury after some hard shooting days.

Our friends in the band Kakaxa ("shit", but in a nice way) saw us off at the station. Normally gentle and calm kids, they looked distressed. Turned out the usual pre-match football rally in the center of the city had turned violent. Pro-Russians and Pro-Ukrainians were fighting downtown. Information was coming via rushed texts and second hand reports, but it sounded like someone had already been killed.

I don't know why we got on that train. We had no idea what would come next, that Ukraine would suffer its most violent day since the height of the Maidan protests, that beautiful Odessa, up to that point so calm that we had decided to travel further east to feel the real tension in the country, would explode in mob violence.

Something told me to stay, to see what happens, but we got on the train and waved to our worried friends and opened a beer and hoped everything would be OK. As we pulled out of town and violence descended on the city the light turned gold and I took a photo of a damn window.

Masha and Sergey say goodbye.