Hi all, since I finally got some internet access in my apartment (long, long story about that), it’s time for another post about how Russia is going! While you can also expect some more pictures in the coming days, today (or rather, tonight; it’s after 10 PM here) is not that day. Apologies for that tease.
So this past Monday, I had my second day off (Sunday being the first one-I spent that just lounging around in the apartment) and went in to central Moscow. My mission was to check out Red Square, which I ultimately accomplished! Along the way, I checked out St. Basil’s Cathedral, the GUM mall, and the Russian History Museum (and a Krispy Kreme to cap the day off), so it was an amazing day; unfortunately I didn’t get to swing by Lenin’s Mausoleum. I would first like to thank my lucky stars that the metro stop (Ploshad Revolyutsii) for Red Square is a straight shot from mine. Okay, it was an hour, but it was a straight shot nonetheless. The first thing I did was to take the obligatory picture of Red Square, and I can now check that off of my bucket list! One thing I noticed was how there was a good chunk of Red Square fenced off, so that limited how much we could walk. Otherwise it was normal. I spent about an hour or so in St. Basil’s Cathedral, also known as the church with the colorful onion domes. Inside, it was amazing. The artwork dated back centuries, and it was preserved-it was heaven. For any Art History majors, your head would explode at the detail on some of the works. It easily was one of the greatest churches I’ve been into, and I’ve been to quite a few magnificent ones. After that, I decided to head to something more modern, aka the GUM mall right off the square. What this is was a former Soviet shopping center turned into something even more opulent. Seriously, half the stores were luxury clothing (Gucci was one of them), but it was neat strolling through and taking in the sights. However, it reminded me that I’m not exactly in a position to spend all willy nilly. Eh, I’m not complaining about my job. After that, I tried to head to see Lenin’s Mausoleum, but it closed a few hours prior. Oh well, I’m going to have to make a return trip! From there, I decided to cap my day off by visiting the Russian History Museum. I didn’t opt for the English audio guide, so I had to guess what I was seeing. Despite the language barrier, I enjoyed my time. It was neat seeing Russian history from the very beginning, as Western textbooks only cover snippets (i.e. the Soviet Union) if at all. Some exhibits weren’t available, which was a bummer, so I only saw up to the 18th century of history. From there, I was getting a bit tired, so I decided to spend an hour riding the metro back. All in all, it was a great few hours to soak in the legendary Russian sights!