Monday, July 03, 2006

Shag za Shagum - Step by Step

Happy 4th of July! It is at least here, although it isn't any sort of holiday. We did see an advertisement in the metro with a picture of Uncle Sam and a notice for meeting on July 4th discussing a "Day of Independence from American Money." It sounded slightly sinister.

We have had a very full and blessed time in Moscow, although I can't help feeling that the time is slipping through our fingers. Every day I'm here I remember some place else I want to see, someone else I want to track down and visit. But we do so much in one day that we ache from exhaustion every night, and we promise ourselves not to push ourselves the next time, but we do anyway.

Monday, we tramped down to the center with Dougal and Lucy, Rob and Denyce, and Mike Soto to register our visas. The four men commandeered the map, and the women trailed behind discussing babies, husbands, and memories. I like being with Lucy and Denyce. They are both relaxed and fun and share so many interests with me that conversation are never boring. It was one of my favorite kinds of days in Moscow. The sun was bright but not smothering, the lovely old buildings painted pastel pinks, greens, and yellows with their faded white trim reflected the optimism of a lovely summer morning. The trees shaded our walk, and each new corner revealed new vistas and some surprises. We found the visa agency and climbed to the third story. The four ladies in the tiny room seemed overwhelmed by the 8 1/2 of us and shooed us away to the street bellow to wait for them to stamp and verify our time spent in Moscow as tourists. Then we walked down to Tverskaya, a wide boulevard of city activity where we said good-bye to the other six 1/2 and walked back to Arbat.

Old Arbat is a cobblestone walking street filled with sellers of souvenirs, artists painting portraits, and musicians performing for kopecks. We ambled down the street as we collected things to take home to loved ones, admired pictures, and enjoyed classical guitar music. Arbat was always one of my favorite places to go.

We met Nelly at 6: 30 in a Massive mall next to the Kurskaya train and metro stations. We ate blini with berries and sweet cream and sipped tea in the food court while we caught up on life since we've been apart. It was so nice to be able to reignite our friendship and bring James into the memories we had of old times and old conversations. I'm so thankful that God allowed our meeting to remind me more poignantly of people that I was able to touch here. She is not a Christian yet, but I believe this visit might have encouraged her to continue seeking for what is missing in her life.

We decided to go home after that, feeling like we were heading in early, but a glance at our watches showed that we would be getting home at 10. It's funny how the late evening sun is throwing even us Alaskans off! James bought me a lovely rose on the way home, and we created an impromptu vase out of a Fanta bottle. It's interesting how I feel like I belong here and then I don't at the same time. At least I always feel like I belong with James, and I know we'll be fine anywhere God takes us.


1 comment:

  1. dad & mom K11:06 PM

    Dear Ones,
    We've sent you a longer email today. We LOVE your postings. Bless you for bringing so many along with you

    Ps 135:5-7
    5 For I know that the LORD is great
    And that our Lord is above all gods.
    6 Whatever the LORD pleases, He does,
    In heaven and in earth, in the seas and in all deeps.
    7 He causes the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth;
    Who makes lightnings for the rain,
    Who brings forth the wind from His treasuries.

    Love, dad & Mom K


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