Monday, July 25, 2016

Until Next Time

I just realized that this is my 100th blog post, which is an awkward reminder that I spend far too much time rambling about Russia. Nonetheless, I felt like I should write one more blog post before I leave Russia for the summer. Ten weeks have flashed by, and I find myself on the eve of departure once again.

The point of coming to Russia this summer was to work on my Russian and finish my novel, both of which proved to be overambitious goals. My Russian has improved markedly in the last year, but it still lags behind my Spanish—even after all the time I’ve spent beating it into my brain. As for my novel, I’m starting to think of it as an emotionally abusive boyfriend. It makes me feel bad about myself, but I just keep going back for more. Despite my sense of inadequacy, the baristas at the Coffee Bean on Pyatnitskaya have reassured me somewhat on both counts. Today the new barista complimented my Russian, even if I did pronounce the adjectival form of “mango” incorrectly on my first try. And yesterday, one of them let me cut the line and asked if I’d be having my usual, so I must have been going in to write sans WiFi more than I realized.

The rest of the summer was a flurry of all that Moscow magic that keeps bringing me back: picnics in Gorky Park, apocalyptic thunderstorms, ballet and theatre, endless summer nights, linguistic triumphs (and debacles), walks along the Moscow River, strangers on trains, Georgian dinners, and a fair amount of vodka and wine. Naturally, I’ve already planned my return for next June, because there’s really nothing better than a Moscow summer.

Московское лето (Moscow summer)

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