Andrei dropped us off in the 'old town' and we found a posh cafe for soup and drinks. London prices, but a very nice place. After lunch we walked to the All Saints Russian Orthodox Church. Hoping to miss the rain we sat in there for a while watching the faithful as they prayed or contemplated the pictures of saints on the walls. A few kissed them after crossing themselves rigorously before and afterwards. People of all ages came and went. The rain showed no sign of stopping so we went back outside and decided we had actually 'done' Minsk. We walked back up to the old town and looked inside a few shops. As we walked past GUM, the Russian equivalent of Selfridges, we laughed as there was a kiosk on the pavement selling garden supplies. Everything from gnomes to plants and a portable toilet! Then Jon's eagle eye spotted some Thetford Toilet fluid, which we have needed since we left Germany. What a surprise.
Opposite GUM Jon spotted (very astute today Jon) a cafe that advertised Vegetarian Food on its canope. It was called the London Cafe and was decorated with various pictures and memorabilia from Britain, but mainly London. Eccentric and quirky with a great atmosphere. Following drinks in there we walked to an Indian Restaurant. The meal was delicious and expensive but provided an unexpected treat.
The restaurant was close to the metro. There are two lines which cross at one central station so navigation wasn't too taxing. Buying a fare was also easy, a plastic token each, purchased at the kiosk for 20p would take us anywhere in the city. Andrei's house was beyond the end of the line so we texted him to come and meet us as arranged. He didn't get our message but this wasn't a problem, we just negotiated a fare with a passing taxi. Bizarrely my errant text message ended up being delivered to a land line in Derby, I wonder what the recipients made of that.
Our farewells the following morning took quite a long time as it involved coffees, photos, a tour of the garden and more coffee. Close to Minsk was an outdoor living history museum of various village dwellings around Belarus. It was very well put together and all the huts looked the same as what we have seen driving along, except for the thatched roofs. Something nasty stang me on my neck and unusually for me I felt quite unwell afterwards. I didn't see the little critter.