Quite a speech, I understand and agree with most of it, negtive an outlook as it is. I take it you firmly believe this sort of thing is doomed before it starts, or at least if they are remotely attractive and/or 'he' is not a millionaire.
Anyway the point I was trying to make, and as kiwi said, is even if you send flowers, assuming the actually get them, they have probably just got file photo's. I asked a girl for a recent picture and got one of her holding a bunch of flowers !! There on old or file picture.
I think that it has also already been said that the only sure fire way to find out is to go there and then rely on your insticts I guess. Trouble is when a pretty girl is involved my insticts suck!!
Pay per letter sites avoid like the plague. Secondly Apal hasn't seen the Ukraine that I saw. Most have cars, Ipods, Laptops? Hmmm? He didn't explain how decrepid the phone infrastructure in Ukraine is and how expensive internet service is there. Cell phones, yep many have them but they are not on contract like we are here in the west. Plus they don't pay for incoming calls on their cell phones. Cars really? I didn't see that either. Laptops? I didn't see that either. If that was the case why are the internet cafes thriving so well.
It's a negative outlook if you make it a negative outlook. Common sense and a good gut feeling will always work well in this venture. If it doesn't seem right, it probably isn't. If you can't get a phone number or an address of a girl, no matter how beautiful she is, it's time to move on. Probably not to sincere, thus the pay per letter continues to communicate with her.
Nothing makes you part with your money but yourself, trying to buy something that is not real is the western guys biggest downfall. I've seen it over and over here. Patience and common sense will always prevail. It's not the most extreme emergency to hop on the first plane out of town to see some woman in the FSU just because she asks. If she wants everything handled through the agency, move on, it's a ruse to pry your bucks from you. Beyond the translation of letters there is very little the agency will bring to the table for you. Translator, easily found without the agencys help. Most girls under the age of 25 have a decent command of the English language. If she's older and doesn't speak, find a translator on your own and use them. They will be more responsive to you since you are paying them and they aren't on the agency payroll.
You can do many things in advance to figure out if your trip is going to be worth it or not. If she pushes an instant meeting, back off, take a deep breath and look at the situation. Do some more inquiry. Communicate and if she breaks off the communication then move on. Using a pay service you don't know if she is writing or Natalie or Boris is. More prudent to use a service that doesn't charge a pay per letter. Ask many questions, it's your life. If she doesn't want to answer them, move on. The agencys don't want you to have control, it's a sales process, no different that buying a car or house etc, except your dealing with a human life. Which in itself is more important than any material thing you will buy. So why let someone else dictate anything for you? If she can't recall what you have written in past letters do some more inquiry. Always ask important questions in her letters then call her and discuss them, if she doesn't know what you are talking about, move on you're probably getting shafted. If she's really interested she will have the letters and read them many times. Sincere ladies from Ukraine do such because the tend to be very detailed oriented.
Bottom line use the head on your shoulders and not the one in your pants.
you will need their phone numbers, its a must.
not one ever came to motel on given date with me, you have to ring them though Anastasia or their own phone numbers, it just how they are.
other wise you will be drinking a lot of that cheap beer[its OK] waiting wasting time.
any phone shop in Kiev will get you sorted with phone or phone card and start it up for you, cheap as compared to New Zealand.
there's always someone in these shops that speak English in bigger stores, they are everywhere, more phone shops then take away food.
Irish bars or western style bars are an embarrassment there, the prices are through the roof, no wonder they think we are rich.
bugger i have forgotten names of some good bars.
let her guide you, its really a small price to pay, there wine is the worst i have ever tasted so take as much as you can and good chocolate, its gold there.
one good point is if you find your own translator and say no to theirs if its needed.
if she goes with her translator and not stay with you, you could have been writing to translator, if you find you like her alot it might be a good idea to try.
i wish i could have taken one of mine home, i think she new all about me the cheeky loverly thing.
i wish i was coming with you, its a great place, but trust no one to a point, even old ladies, at leased the beggars are all honest. the place is hell of a laugh.
they are corrupt as and don't mind gaining dollars out of you, its a national sport it seems.
i tell ya, was i under dressed for this place, its a fashion parade from the 80's
good luck to you mate.
I have a distrust of translator provided, how o I go about finding my own.
Anastasia has told me that I can get the girls phone no. or address but I may have to use the Anastasia phone call first. No biggy, but after that I would prefer someone that is not on anastasia pay roll. Am I too paranoid??
Good idea for phone!
Where did you go, can you recommend a half decent hotel that won't cost a kings ransom?
Thanks for that well explained and reasoned judgement there Fabio