Note From Jon


Monday, May 26, 2008

Russia Reflections

I realize that not everyone (anyone?) has the time or interest to read through the world's wordiest travelogues. Others (or at least Joel) get confused reading them out of order because the last entry is at the top. Just for you I'm providing a couple top ten lists and adjusting the post order so you don't injure your scrolling fingers.

Top 10 Least Favorite Things about the trip to Russia:
10) You can't enter or exit the Kremlin on the Red Square side
9) Despite numerous attempts I never found a Russian Asterix comic to add to my collection
8) Separate stairways for each floor of the Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory
7) Having to buy your playbill at ballet and theatre performances
6) Nobody will actually take credit cards in Moscow (regardless of what the signs and window stickers might imply)
5) Lack of english in most museums and tours (granted we have even less Russian in ours)
4) 3 o'clock canal tours that leave at 2:55
3) Frustrating visa process. Unless you are on a tour or in one hotel the whole time, spend the $30 for a support letter from
2) April renovations!
1) Having a broken metro escalator be a life-threatening experience

Top 10 Favorite Things about the trip to Russia:
10) Learning Russian replaces Hs with Gs. As in Gamlet, MakDonald's Gamburger, Gary Potter and Alkogolic.
9) Soups! Horcha and Borsch
8) Continuing the odd travel tradition of finding someone holding a chicken (in this case a Nesting Doll)
7) Free student admission to the Hermitage
6) Learning about Love Locks on the Patriarchal Bridge
5) Portion sizes (grams or mL) are displayed on the menu next to the prices
4) Most pleasant souvenir shopping experience abroad at Ismailovsky Market
3) Figuring out how to buy train tickets to St. Petersburg without using English
2) Aesthetics and efficiency of the Moscow metro (when escalators are operating)
1) Discovering Russian artists at the Tretyakov Gallery and Russian Museum

Still curious (and easily confused like Joel)? Here are the links in chronological order:
Day 1 - Moscow. Ismailovsky Market
Day 2 - Moscow. Lenin, Kremlin and Red Square
Day 3 - Moscow. Buying train tickets
Day 3 cont. and Day 4 - Moscow. Novodevichy Convent, Matryoshka Museum, Don Quixote, Pushkin Fine Arts Gallery, Tretyakov Gallery, Eugene Onegin
Day 5 - Moscow. Kolomenskoe Reserve and Metro Tour
Day 6 - St. Petersburg. Hermitage, St. Isaac's Cathedral, Swan Lake
Day 7 - St. Petersburg. Peter and Paul Fortress, Canal Tour, Russian Museum, Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

If for some reason you still want more, here are three final slideshows covering:

Russian People

Church Domes

Recognized Brands


glass_window said...

Somebody has to do this, so may as well get it over with:

In Soviet Russia, Kremlin Exits you.

VagabondetteVA said...

Well I've enjoyed it. Don't let the fact that Joel apparently can't follow a blog throw you off. Bummed I'm missing the first BBQ of the season this year but I'll see you in August!


joel said...

I didn't realize Jon was so sensitive to comments about his blog. Glad he is feeling better and removed the pink panties. Oh, and thanks for the top 10 post, though i still had to scroll, but no my finger doesn't hurt.

Borsch. Was just discussing this with my cousins in NY. Was yours warm or cold? Purple or ? I grew up with it being a cold Beet soup with warm baked potato chunks. Apparently this is not Romanian Borsch which is warm and I recall not purple.

portion sizes, also done in Romania, awesome.

Really, no credit cards? I can't remember if Romania was the same way. I do recall one gas station required my pin number to my credit card, I was SURE this was a cash advance and would be charged exorbitant rates upon return but not the case, just a security thing I guess. Was a regular charge.

I will read the blog Jon, maybe I can get it in audio book format for my drive back to VA tomorrow. or for the cross country drive. blogs on cd. hmmmm

Jon said...

I'm not sensitive, just responsive to the special needs of some of my "readership" :-) As for the audio version I recommend that you record yourself reading it out loud. Then you can listen to it over and over again on the drive across country and it's sure to keep you awake. On second thought you might not get through the whole thing on one trip, perhaps you'll have to listen to the second half on your move back to D.C. :-p

I had Borsch several times but it was always warm and usually some shade of reddish purple.

Kristin said...

Holy cow! I just googled "Russian Asterix" and you are result #10!