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...odds & ends that might interest you. So yesterday I was at the get-together at my sisters' where they showed pictures of their Moscow visit and told stories.

That about the concrete buildings proved a mis-communication, of course. But my sister, her boyfriend and their little child, as well as their host, and a couple of visiting relatives all fit into one 60 m² apartment of one concrete apartment block. At that get-together, there was allegedly a toast every two minutes, ending in scenes reminding of 4...

On politics, they say everyone said that the government is hard at work to build the New Russia image, and that as part of it, there is an effort to remove old Soviet and communist symbols where they aren't historically protected. The closure of Lenin's mausoleum is allegedly a decided matter (on which they confirm what I heard elsewhere, that most locals think the display of Lenin's mummy is something silly). They also listened to rants to the tune that Lenin & the communists have ruined Russia (uhm, was what was there before really that good? Not to mention the ruin by the Nazis?)

Moscow is said to be very expensive, but while they confirmed that for real estate (that 60m² concrete block apartment was worth more than a 200m² house in a posh district here), they say everything else was much cheaper than in Budapest, except for a trendy café with bad service. Speaking of public places, they say there was music from megaphones from the shopping streets to through the apartment blocks to the village in which a relative had a dacha. (I knew this madness from Czechoslovakia, where it is going out of fashion since.)

They photographed all kinds of public transport for me, praising the inside of the new Elektrichka; but just to the airport, they thought a taxi is more convenient with a child than the airport train links.

And this will surely make you happy: back to the airport, the taxi driver asked them: "Why do you go back to the EU? The EU is finished. But here we have a boom, there are lots of unexploited opportunities!"

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Mon Jul 28th, 2008 at 06:40:22 AM EST

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