The Nightmare and Joke Going around Town
This is a marshrutka - it is a little shuttle bus for getting around town. They are privately owned and run at higher frequency intervals than the City Buses. A ride across town will set you back 4 ua - which is about 15 cents - a pretty good bargain.
When I first got around town I was trapped between walking and taking a taxi - I have since moved into town closer and I can catch one of these with ease.
Linguisticly - the humor comes when my friend said that she would Catch Marshrytka. Russians and Ukrainians delete articles - unless they are demonstratively required for emphasis or ownership - the filler words simply never appear. But my American ears led me astray. I had never heard the word for the little minibus.... and so I heard Kashmar Shytka - Which if you know the language .... Means "Nightmare Joke." The look on my face must have telegraphed my confusion.
While she was waiting for her bus - she attempted to explain in English - and I attempted to repeat in Russian.... it did not seem to get any better. She pulled out her phone, and typed in the text to show me the word.... and all was understood. Another case of American Ears, Ukrainian tongue and Russian Memories had occurred again.