Saturday, 14 April 2012


Sozzles for only one blog post yesterday, we had an insanely busy day which ended with us almost missing our train to St. Petes (this, unfortunately, is starting to become a habit)! On the train we met a scary Russian skinhead who made us (he told us if we didn't he'd be angry) drink Samagon (home brewed vodka). It wasn't pleasant. 

We began the day by setting out to find the famed Romanov FabergĂ© eggs! Well, as you can probably guess (due to our experience in being intrepid explorers) it was not overly difficult to locate them (the fact that they are world famous and basically have their own exhibition didn't assist us in the slightest) and we were stunned by their beauty. They are literally stunning. We spent about half an hour deciding which ones to ship back for our mum's - we kept having to jostle little Russian kids out of the way. We were banned from taking pictures (well, not just us, no one could take pictures) so we have googled our favourites. 

Spending time in Russia has reminded us (because we are that old) of a time where everything that was made, despite its possible mundane purpose, had beauty. We only get one life (unless you are Hindu) and we should enjoy it as much as possible. As we have written before, beauty is so important to us, it makes life so enjoyable and it was such as joy to see their amazing FabergĂ© Easter eggs (beats one from Cadbury, s'all we're saying!).

We then were blinded by diamonds when we entered the amazing world of the Russian Diamond Fund - it's remarkable how like Magpies human beings are. We spent about two hours looking at the various diamonds of Russia and the jewels and diamonds of the Russian Imperial Court were actually breathtaking. The most amazing thing is is that people actually used these objects, it's kind of mind boggling the wealth that exists.

After seeing the wealth of the Romanov's, something came over us and we decided to have desert at the world famous Cafe Pushkin. It was totally incredible and we saw (what we think were) Oligarchs dining out with their unruly children! It is really interesting (but an obvious observation) what money can give you access to. It is amazing how much money some people have and how little others have. We aren't advocating socialism but we do think that people who have access to such incredible wealth do have a responsibility to help those less fortunate. It is very easy to blind our eyes to the needs of others, people live in poverty, people live in fear of their lives, people are continuously oppressed and we choose (yes, it is a choice) to ignore it. It is entirely possible to enjoy your life and have nice things and still fulfil your responsibility to your fellow man. 

After a really interesting day we met up with Catherine Broers (a sister of Ben's friend from Glasgow) who is living in Moscow teaching English. We thought that we were going to go for a quiet coffee, how wrong we were. We met Catherine outside the Red Square and were met by a group of lovely ladies from all over the UK (and Canada). They then took us down a couple of side streets and we entered Bar 1920. We were met by the most astonishing sights. Russian men and women flailing their arms about and dancing wildly to such tunes as 'pretty fly for a white guy', 'can't touch this', 'freedom 90' and 'last resort'. It was quite hilarious. We seem to be very interesting to Russian people who kept engaging us in long (incomprehensible) conversations. After spending too long at the bar we rushed back to the hostel to collect our bags. We made it to the train with five minutes to spare. Moscow certainly was an adventure.
What is she saying?!

Lovely Catherine! 

We are now in St. Petes. It looks good.


  1. Your skinhead friend it the bomb, showed you some good old Russian hospitality, and shame on you for not enjoying samogon.
    I expect you to bring me back a diamond tiara...