Moscow #3. A Tsar Park and Stalin Towers.

My last day in Moscow had come; the train to Kiev was already booked (thanks to Ann!) and I had opted to see some more things in this amazing city. My original plan was to visit some cities of the golden ring, north east from Moscow, such as Suzdal and Vladimir, but I decided to skip that this time, due to the weather condition. But I’ll be back…

First I took the metro to Tsarinskaya, a large park of the tsars, located a few miles south of the Red Square. It was very impressive and wide. Many Moscovites came here to walk with their children and it was peaceful. A handfull of classicist buildings were scattered in the huge area of the park, and I also enjoyed them. Inside there was an exhibition about Marlene Dietrich, which I skipped. I had lived 2 years within one block of her birth place, so it would have been interesting. But my Russian was still very poor.


After that I went to вднх (“vudinga”), another metro station where an array of pompous Stalinist buildings attracted some tourists like myself. I gazed at the monument for world’s first astronaut, Yuri Gagarin in 1961, a bent thin concrete obelisk with a rocket on top of it. I walked through a gate resembling the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, but less sophisticated, and entered a typical Stalinist pyramid. I was surprised to find Disney and Pixar figures in front of it, and a shopping mall inside. I ate a blin (pancake) and wrote a couple of pages on a cup of bad coffee.

Mascha, my new host, cooked a very tasted rice-meal with seafood. I went to bed early…

… and woke up early to go to Kievskaya station, where my train to Kiev would leave. I sat down in a small cafe and took out my notebook, just as always. The intake of some coffee resulted in the output of a few pages written, but after an hour or so, the lady began to ask me to leave since I sat without consuming anything for too long. I ate some meat dish; it tasted not bad. I had a hard time ordering it, even after studying the menu I had to guess what I was going to get, but that was funny too, in a way.

I moved to a more luxurious place opposite the station. In a mall of several storeys with glass facades and coffee bars on different levels, I waited for Ann, who came to say me goodbye. After a good conversation we wished each other good luck, and she accompanied me until the train compartment, in accordance with Russian tradition. She could tell by their faces that my company for the night were friendly people. She’d been right about that, I found out later.

And so the train to Kiev left the station…

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Kamiel Choi

Dutch philosopher and poet, sometimes sharing thoughts on the internet.

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