KYIV, Ukraine — Residents of Kyiv know that at any moment, they may have to spend a few hours in an air raid shelter in a city where daily routines have been disrupted by incessant Russian missile attacks, unpredictable power outages and unreliable water supplies. .
It had been 13 days since the last large-scale barrage of Russian missiles were fired at targets across Ukraine, the longest stretch without bombings in and around the capital since Moscow launched an assault on the country’s energy infrastructure in early October. For days, Ukrainian officials had been warning that another attack was imminent.
So when air raid alarms sounded across Kiev on Monday afternoon, not many were surprised. Sirens continued to warn of incoming missiles, and soon the thunder of air defense systems could be heard over the capital.
“To be honest, I feel relieved at the moment,” said 34-year-old Olha Kotras.
Ms Gotres sat on the floor of a Kiev metro station with her mum, a cat in a cage and her dog. The dog, dressed in blue to keep cool in winter, was obviously stressed. Ms. Godreus was angry and bored.
Hundreds of people gathered underground at the Golden Gate metro station, named after the main fortress that served as the gateway to the city 1,000 years ago.
However, in the evening, the famous gate is no longer lit, and like most of the city is plunged into darkness. Monday’s barrage of rockets targeting sites across the country was the eighth wave of attacks on key energy infrastructure targets, according to national utility operator Ukrainergo.
“Unfortunately, energy infrastructure has already been affected, and there are related emergency power outages,” Ukrenergo said in a statement.
At least ten rockets were aimed at Kiev on Monday, according to local officials. Nine people were shot down over the capital, officials said.
Like everyone interviewed in Kyiv, Ms. Godrus’ anger was directed at Russia and his despair was the result of days of anxiety and long, dark nights filled with powerlessness.
Anna Sokolova, 21, said she had suffered cuts in electricity and water supplies for two weeks since the last wave of missiles. Ms. Sokolova lives and said she always takes shelter when alarms sound.
But she didn’t want to complain about her own hardships, which her friends told her were nothing compared to the experiences of soldiers fighting on the front lines.
Lyumila Vonifatova, 66, agreed.
“We all understand that without electricity, life is impossible,” he said. “However, we must find a way to overcome it.”
She was passing the time in the subway station by looking at pictures of this war and other pictures that came before it.
“Despite the loss of human life and economic hardship, we will stand till the end,” he said. Because this is a fight for our freedom.
But Tetyana Tkachenko’s six-year-old son is too young to understand it. He said he gets scared every time the alarms go off.
“He was crying and running around,” Ms Tkachenko said, when the alarms started going off. He quickly put on warm clothes and pleaded, “Go to the subway.”
She grabbed a couple of folding chairs that she had previously used for the park or the beach. But now they were part of the family’s new routine, because when the sirens sounded they went deep underground.
“Communicator. Music aficionado. Certified bacon trailblazer. Travel advocate. Subtly charming social media fanatic.”