It is a wet, drab day in Yerevan, which is a pity, for our formal business is over and we have a day off to enjoy the city. But we've been for a walk anyway, passing the National Assembly building, the Cascade, which houses a rather impressive museum and some interesting sculpture, and Opera Square, with its surrounding parkland filled with cafes and bars.
Our fellow delegates, many of whom had visited Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia, before coming on to Yerevan, have been a mite dismissive about Armenia, but Ros and I are rather smitten by Yerevan. One doesn't want to patronise, but this is a plucky country, with friendly people, and a sense of ambition and pride. Yes, there's not a lot of money around, and the neighbourhood is a tough one, but given a chance, Armenians could make a genuine go of it.
Republic Square is the heart of the city, surrounded by vast, imposing arcs of buildings, one of which is the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and another the Marriott Hotel, with a nice cafe restaurant outside (not cheap, mind you). But in the evening, the square comes into its own, with the musical fountain and light show. Yerevan is big on water and fountains.
I will confess that I probably would never have come here unless ELDR had decided to hold a meeting here, but I'm also delighted that I came. Indeed, Ros and I are talking about coming back to the region at some point.