Thursday, September 12, 2013

hi, hello, and welcome

I can't remember if I've ever told the story of my first day in Russia. (apparently the motherland has been on my mind lately)

(This picture was taken on a sleeper train a few weeks into my stay, but I feel the expression on my face adequately describes the overall vibe from my first day.)

It was long, it was traumatic, but it was oh-so worth sharing.
In parts, probably. I tend to go into detail and drag things out.

(Maybe it really isn't all that great, but allow me to help you distort your mind into the sort of mental state I was in. I had spent my last night hanging out with Husband [who at the time was just Boyfriend], and didn't get home until about 3AM. I hadn't started packing yet, and the plan was to be at the airport at 5. We left the U.S. in the morning, and arrived in Russia the next day, at about 10AM. I was running on zero sleep. Enter the mindset 30-some-odd hours of sleep deprivation here.)

You know the first episode of The Walking Dead when Mr. Main Character wakes up and the hospital is completely empty? Well, zombies happened to take over the Moscow airport that morning. The only people in sight were those on the flight with me, and after walking down a long, eerie hallway, a few exceptionally nice (that's a lie) Russian officials.

They handed us a paper to fill out.
It was in russian.

A half-hour later, I think I finally got through customs. Mainly because it took me that long to figure out how to write my name in a different alphabet.

We entered into an area of the air-port with more people. There was a bathroom there, so I went in. Most of the stalls were full, but there was one toward the end of the line-up with the door partially opened.
"EXCELLENT!" (I really had to pee)

I started to open it, when the door hit an object before it had opened all the way. I was startled. I looked up, and a non-english speaking woman was standing with her back to me. Her pants were around her ankles, and she was failing miserably at playing pretend urinal.

I just stood there with my mouth hanging open. What is she doing? Scolding me and closing the stall door, that's what. I awkwardly bumped into a few people while trying to run out of there and as far away from that woman as I could. Then I remembered I still had to pee.



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