Moskva

Jan. 14th, 2006 08:48 pm
wonderlanded: (Irina Smiles)
[personal profile] wonderlanded
Today, I did a number of things. The one that took up most of my time was defrosting the freezer, which judging by the fact that none of the drawers would open any more, so choked were they with ice, had not been done for the last two or three years.

But the most fun thing I did was going to the Russian New Year's festivities in Trafalgar Square, which were exceptionally cool. Among the much food and hot chocolate I consumed, I managed to pick up a number of booklets and brochures from Intourist and other Russian travel services which will come in terribly handy for my trip.

The Intourist ones are all frightfully professional, but my absolute favourite is the City of Moscow's Official Tourist Guide, which has been interpreted by someone with a shaky grasp of idiom, at best. Some gems:

"Public lavatories occur without any order... you will be charged for using 8 - 15 roubles."

"Each country has its own legends, and in oral traidition of people never been in Moscow, this country is a huge forest with peasants and bears and permanent snow. Maybe someone pictures Moscow as a capital of communism. Less people know that we have won the Second World War. Dreams and reality usually differ."

"First thing that one should know when staying in Moscow or in any other city -- mind your manners and no one attacks you."

"This trouble may occur in Moscow -- occasionally being involved in a terrorist attack. In preventing this kind of attacks the Russian capital is in the leading positions. Keep away of crowded places, watch out unattended luggage or boxes and don't be afraid!"

"And after all let us talk about street and transport thieves.... Don't snow or count dollars or euro before somebody's eyes. Be polite and God bless you."

It's awfully sweet, and awfully funny. I think I'm going to have readings.
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