Notes from Russia.

I have not been writing about my travels in Russia because of the following reasons.
1) I have been too busy simply enjoying myself.
2) I did not bring my USB cable so I cannot upload my pictures. I bought a card reader here in Moscow but either it does not work or I do not know how to make it work. My computer finds the pictures on my camera, but they seem not to copy over. I want to include pictures as I describe my travels.
3) I am being followed by a KGB agent disguised as a bear, and I think my emails are being monitored.

I can say that I am thoroughly enjoying myself, and the glorous weather does not hurt. In Moscow I cannot imagine driving a car, since a lot of time the roads seem more like parking lots than actual thoroughfares. And when the main boulevards do open up, the locals really step on the gas until the next bottle neck appears. Here in the centre there are lots of black expensive cars with chauffeurs lazing around, while the owners are shopping in luxury shops. Then there was the time near the Kremlin where all traffic , including pedestrian traffic, was held up while waiting for a motorcade of black cars to emerge from the Kremlin. There was a bit of honking of horns to let off steam. I prefer walking the subway.

People here fall into two categories. People you meet on the street to ask for directions, or friends that you have, and they are tremendously warm, hospitable, generous with their time and helpful. The other group works in shops, railway stations, subway stations, etc. and they consider you a nuisance for having bothered them, and make sure you realize it.

The subways in both St. Petersburg and Moscow are great, with very efficient automatic payment cards. The high speed train from St. Pete to Moscow was extremely comfortable. I was in second class. I cannot imagine what first class offers for twice the price, maybe a massage?

Anyway, I promise a more detailed diary with notes upon my return next week. Now I am off to the History of Moscow Museum and the Tretiakov Museum


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