Since late 2013 and the start of the Ukrainian revolution, hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians have been fighting to save their country from the corrupt, criminal, psychopathic and violent. Many thousands have died and countless more have been injured or left without husbands, wives, lovers, friends and children. These Ukrainians (and a few brave foreigners) fought so that people like me can sit in Kyiv drinking coffee and talking about travel apps, so that Podil’s hipsters can ride around on their bikes talking about tattoos, and so the noisy kids in the school next to our office inherit a country that is both freer, safer and more prosperous than the Ukraine of the past 20 years.

Perhaps, as a result of their fight, a future me wont sit here in Kyiv feeling sad that so many of his favourite Ukrainians are abroad. Perhaps a future Ukrainian will be able to live, work, travel and study with the ease that we can in ‘the west’. Perhaps the gap that exists between Ukraine’s obscenely rich and nefarious and the tragically poor will be reduced by enough to provide basic support and shelter for those who currently have no access to effective healthcare or social support.

Perhaps or perhaps not, but as today is ‘Defenders day‘ – here’s to everyone who fought and continues to fight for a better Ukraine.

Enjoy your day-off and Slava Ukraini!