My current read is In Siberia by Colin Thubron, a travel writer who has traveled extensively in the USSR and Russia. I’ve only just begun– he’s only made it as far into Siberia as Novosibirsk– and I’m already itching to lay out my game plan for travel across Siberia via the Trans-Siberian Railroad. He’s inspired me to always challenge myself while abroad to talk to as many people as possible and experience every opportunity presented.
Check back tomorrow for brief ruminations on the history and culture of Siberia!
Almost a year ago today, I got on a plane headed for Russia without a visa– not an action I recommend. It was a character building experience and gave me the opportunity to both see Stockholm and nurse my wounded pride. Now, having spent the past year gallivanting around in New York City and letting my aspirations pass me by, I am making a second attempt at a life in Saint Petersburg. Today marks one month until my September 29th flight.
In the approaching days I have found my anxieties creeping up on me, consuming my thoughts at my most vulnerable times; mainly while lying awake at 5am, unable to sleep and thinking “what the hell am I about to do.” But this time everything will go smoothly. I have all the elements for my visa in order: formal invitation from the Russian Foreign Ministry, enough consecutive blank passport pages, an HIV test and a tenacity to finally set foot in that city.
For the next month, I am going to be consumed with brushing up on my subpar Russian, updating this blog, teaching myself to take professional quality photographs and becoming a social media maven. All in order to provide the most accurate, intelligent and engaging dispatches from the Russian Russian Empire.