Our next day trip out of Minsk took us south, to the shtetl of Slutsk. The city is still famous in Belarus for its history of embroidery: starting during the time of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, local Jewish artisans were commissioned to create special sashes for the Polish aristocracy. Today, these noble sashes are only found in museums, but embroidered linens are still made for both everyday and ceremonial purposes.
Since not much of old Slutsk remains, we spent our time there practicing to be “zamler,” or collectors, of objects we encountered in our exploration. Helixers turned up everything from flowers (both plastic and organic), fresh berries from the market, a pair of Nikes, and, of course, some souvenir Slutsk sashes.