20 January 2013

Last Night...

I have so much to say, my heart feels like it is bubbling over and all my words are caught up in the back of my throat.

I have moved to Moscow. 

Me, the most American of all girls, from the plainest of all Midwest suburbs, has left everything I've known and ventured to a foreign land. I have never felt more overwhelmed, more frightened, or more completely, unshakably excited than I have in the past forty-eight hours. I am brand new. 

There is so much to say. Moscow is beautiful. My heart has fallen in love. The intensity of this city is too much for me to write about right now. It deserves a concentrated mind and my most thoughtful words. Moscow is too grand for me to write about it quickly and inefficiently.

I have never felt such emotion or depth to buildings, train stations, food, drink or people before I came here. Everything has been lived on and again and again and it's an incredibly moving place to wander through. 

I wish I had more to say, but truthfully, everything is just too caught up in my head right now, so I will just speak about my day yesterday, as it is the one depicted in these pictures. 

After Ben and I settled into our small apartment in the outskirts of Moscow (I'll post pictures of it in a bit), we decided to go see the Red Square. We bundled ourselves up in wool sweaters and fur hats and took the  train into this grand city (I should also note that Moscow is famous for it's metro stations as they are more like glorious castles and museums than places of transportation. I had to be careful not to walk around with my jaw hanging open and my head tilted towards the cascading paintings on the ceilings or the gold-etched stairs, but they were some of the most magnificent things I've ever seen). The train ride itself was as uncomfortable as any train ride, but as soon as I began to see the skyline with it's famous Russian architecture from the gray windows, my heart lept. I began to itch to be outdoors so that I could be closer to this new place. 

After some wandering around (Ben and I did not get off at the right stop at first, but that's alright because we ended up exploring a very beautiful part of the city--I'm not sure which though...), we found ourselves walking up the stairs of the metro onto the Red Square. 

When I saw St. Basil's Cathedral in the distance, I gasped like a child. There it was. One of the most iconic pieces of architecture in the world, and I was so close to it. I grabbed Ben's hand and we wandered through the square, which was covered in hundreds of people despite the fact that it was 9:00 at night and well bellow zero degrees (Russia!! So cold. They were not kidding). Everything was alive and electric, and I was small and filled with shock and awe. 

The cold did not bother me. I was consumed. Pictures will never do this place justice.
It was just incredible. Russia is a grand place and Moscow is it's heart. 

Oh, everything has changed for me. Even as I write this, the "Save", "Publish", etc. buttons are all in Russian. The language I have known is gone. I am vulnerable and I have never felt so alive and curious. 

Alright, I can not type anymore because I want to think my next entry out more. Here are my pictures from last night.

I moved to Moscow and went to the Red Square. 

Russian children are so adorable and everywhere. They're posing with a strange Santa Claus man who stood at the gates.

This is the Kazan Cathedral. This was a truly holy and magical place, as many of the old churches in Europe are. I lit a candle for my grandparents and said some prayers. You were not allowed to take pictures inside, but I assure you, it was magnificent. 

I believe this is a historical museum, but I'm not totally sure. To the left is the beginning of the Kremlin.

I normally think it's kind of dorky to have your picture taken in front of stuff, but I was really excited. The white thing behind me is over Lenin's Mausoleum, which seems to be under construction at the moment. 

The Kremlin! Oh my gosh, is this thing huge. I couldn't even take a picture of it in it's entirety, but it is a massive, intimidating building.

The iconic St. Basil's Cathedral. I have wanted to go here my whole life because I thought the domes looked like candy.  

This is GYM (Gum). It's a really beautiful mall with many high-quality stores. Ben and I walked around in here to escape the cold for a bit. 

My face looks strange and swollen from the cold. I thought I was looking pretty Russian before we left, but as soon as we got on the train, I felt like I stuck out like a sore thumb. I'll have to work on blending in more ;). 


  1. This is AMAZING and it is finally happening to you! I can somewhat relate to the feelings you are experiencing because some of those feeling I get whenever I'm in a new country. But this is more special because you are not a tourist, you are not leaving, you will be living there, you are a resident of that beautiful city! Your love for Moscow will continue to grow and you will feel like you belong as much as you belong to the US. Now you can called two countries home. I'm very excited for you, I'm very happy for your new life! I can't wait to see more pictures! By the way, I also think St. Basil's Cathedral's domes look like candy. The Cathedral reminds me of the city of Oz. It looks magnificent in photos, I cannot imagine what it looks like in person. I love all its vivid colors!

  2. Exactly! I love these words. I don't feel like a tourist very much at all and that is such a special and strange feeling. I want to feel like Moscow is a home, but I'm sure you can agree that those feelings take time to build, so I remain in awe. Thank you for the encouragement!

  3. Oh my gosh!

    First, you look stunning. Second, you are living an adventure!

    I can't wait to see/hear/read more!

    1. Bekah, you are the queen of goodness and kindness. I read your latest entry and I'm so happy for you too! Cheers to a good few days :)

  4. oh my goodness - I know we are strangers but I am SO excited for you!haha! I am already amazed by what you are doing - best wishes and encouragement from afar! xxx

    1. Thank you so much! I really appreciate all the good wishes as I do feel very out of place. But thank you so much for the encouragement!


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