Sunday, May 18, 2008


I can't believe the tour is over already. It seems like it's been such a short time here, too short in fact. Out of all the cities, I think Moscow has been my favorite. Granted it is super-crowded (over 10 million people) and congested (there are now 5 million cars, as opposed to 300,000 about 10 years ago), there is so much vibrance and energy that radiates throughout the whole city. For better or for worse, gangster capitalism has revived the city but has also made it the most expensive city in the world.

Yes it's not as pretty as St. Pete's, and the mix of architecture ranges from gorgeous to "functional". I actually appreciate the variety and the history it records, like rings on a tree. Yes, it takes hours to cross the city. I fell in love the cleanliness and the elegance of the metro, with chandeliers and marble. Standing in the middle of Red Square, where so many have walked before me, was a really phenomenal moment. Though I didn't get to see Lenin, GUM was awesome. Where else can you fast-food Central Asian food?

Off to Helsinki. I am not a fan of Sheremetyevo Airport. We could not check in until an hour and a half before the flight, so we had to sit around waiting amongst the non-deodorized.