VIII – Lunch in Chernobyl


I had expected us to leave the exclusion zone for lunch, but after a bus tour of the nuclear power plant (like all nuclear facilities visiting and photographs are restricted to approved angles like this one) we were directed to a modern canteen right in the heart of the facility.


After a whole-body radiation check – you stand on metal footplates and hold metal grips until a satisfactory result opens gate to let you through – and a civilised toilet break, we gathered in the spotless, modern canteen.

Thick vegetable soup and bread, chicken cutlets, potatoes and aubergines,  salad, sour cream filled pancakes with chocolate sauce, and fruit – back grapes with seeds and segments of oranges.


It was cold outside, I’d had an early start and done a lot of walking, but even allowing for my receptive state of hunger, the hearty meal was utterly delicious.

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Fiona Erskine’s debut thriller “The Chemical Detective” will be published by the Oneworld imprint, Point Blank Books in April 2019.