My driver from JFK to Sunset Park: Pavel Pavlov.
Russia in New York
Ha! That's great. Here in LA, he would have been Armenian. Ah, globalization . . .Glad to hear you got back safely.
On globalization and Armenians in LA: I was running late last Sunday to Teatr Modern (M: Baumanskaya) so I hailed a cab outside my apartment. The driver was from Armenia, though as he was quick to point out, he was actually Assyrian. Anyway, upon learning that I grew up in California, he revealed that his brother lives in LA and was coming back to Moscow in a week. I was quickly invited to a party the next week so that Moscow and Californians could get together. Sadly, I told him I was returning to America and couldn't make it. I imagine that party would have turned into quite a story (based on the driver's description of some previous parties).These are the things I'm really going to miss about Moscow. I can get a Pavel Pavlov here, but that brand of friendliness among migrants just isn't the same. But at least I have my Puerto Rican butcher again, even if I don't have a Georgian woman running out into the street to wish me farewell and good luck on defending my dissertation.
Buster, this is the single most encouraging thing I've hear about Moscow in a while. Thanks for that!Oh, and welcome back. Glad the trip was good, down to the cab ride.
Those are most excellent signs!
Now that you're back in Brooklyn you might want to check out a concert at Bargemusic, at Fulton Pier near the East end of the Brooklyn Bridge. Not cheap (though cheaper than tix to the Philharmonic or the Met) but really good players, and you can't beat the venue; after a nice stroll along the Esplanade from the Clark St. subway stop, you sit there, gazing at Lower Manhattan through a big window behind the players, swaying gently every time a river boat passes. The founder is a remarkable woman, Olga Bloom, now nearly 90; most of the running of the place has been handed off, since 3 or 4 years ago, to a talented violinist named Mark Peskanov, who's widened the scope of programing, but it's still Olga's inspired project. We go every time we're in NY.
L, There are lots of encouraging things about Moscow. Your time there is going to be awesome, I swear.kg, The Russian-speakers are stalking me here. Even in the new hipster haven of DUMBO, they babble on to each other on their mobiles making me listen.rootless, Thanks for the tip. I will look into it, once I get my bearings a bit more.
и я хотела поздравить с днём победи (на самом деле мне интересно - отмечают ли русскые фашисти этот день? ты знаешь если это так?) but so I say "welcome home" (can I say this from here in Georgia?)
Strangers have fed me on trains from Moscow to Kiev; strangers in Moscow have put me up for the night because I had nowhere to go (yes, I have slept on a total stranger's couch and have woken up untouched and unscathed and lived to tell the tale--although I would not want my daughter in similar adventures); strangers have allowed me to cut into the line of people snaking their way into Moscow's 1st McDonald's and thus gave me back 3 hours of my own life; strangers let me rent an apt for $10 a month for a whole year in Kiev; and strangers constantly showered me with freebies and food-gifts wherever I traveled inside the former USSR. There were a lot of unpleasant and idiosyncratic things too but the pretty picture is what I choose to remember of my years in Kiev and Moscow. So go without fear or trepidation, Lena.
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