Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Moscow Musings...

We've had the first sign of spring - hallelujah!  It reached 54 degrees F this weekend.  Pure heaven!  The city erupted with park dwellers, hand holders and even some smiling faces. 
Let’s talk for a minute about parking in Moscow.  Oh my.  I mean, OH MY!!!!!  Rules actually do not exist.  This is a true statement.  You can park your car anywhere and everywhere - and people do!  The city of Moscow has very few tow no apparent need to be considerate of others.  We’ve seen cars literally parked smack dab in the middle of a busy street - causing everyone to go around....traffic for miles...just because you can.  I've even seen a group of 4 burly men manually pick up and move a small car out of the way.  This is an every man for himself society!

Ummm.....really??      Organized chaos...

"I think I'll park riiiight here on this nice corner...."

"Just the spot I was looking for...."

Note cars coming and going down this one-way street - splendid!

We’ve also noticed, through the snowy, slushy winter, very few cars get washed....and why would you when the next day, it will get doused with another stunning layer of dirt and grime.  Although you will often see people wiping off their license one wants to give the police any reason to pull them over.  

This calls for a finger-painted "Wash Me!!!"  Wonder if that translates in Russian...

Custom designs are big!

Shovel time...

Prices!  Moscow shopping prices are generally out of sight.  Take raspberries, for example.  How does $13 for a half pint sound?  We don’t buy raspberries. Now, I will say, we have been pleasantly surprised at how inexpensive a few items are....this huge package of fresh ginger, for example, is only $1!!!!! (And I had already used a knuckle before I snapped the photo). Soooo... we’re having ginger chicken, ginger soup and ginger casserole this week...

The dry cleaners here actually do a fairly good job.  What is amazing is the drop off process and the detailed documentation of what was left behind.  A book is written about each garment....the number of buttons, any holes or tears, what the label says, the brand, the thread count, the number of times it’s been worn, whether it’s cute or not...and would the dry cleaner employee consider wearing it herself....????  Seriously, what are they writing?  Here is what our most recent drop-off slip looks like for 3 pairs of pants and a dress (check marks and all):

Note notary-type stamp in lower right - this is applied to all receipts everywhere!

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