Mother Russia

We nervously arrived at the Russian border, aware that this was our first serious border crossing and with fresh memories of Russian visa disasters and confusions on our minds. After drying some laundry and choreographing our Airag Shuffle, we were waved into border no-man’s land. All three cars got to the fourth and final circle of Russian border-hell, when we were told that only one car could continue to Russia because Paul is the owner of all three and can only legally bring in one (we are thinking of buying him a flannel sport coat for his used-car dealership). Again we were caught off guard by the problem we’d encountered. So we put on our lawyer-pants and the negotiating began. While Paul was vouching for the cars, the rest of us were smiling dumbly while trying to look nice and innocent. It may have been pity, or it may have been that we somehow ended up with the nicest Russian customs official this side of a perogi, but she came up with a method to get all 8 people and 3 cars through. We now have a stack of paperwork thicker than many finance textbooks, but somehow that makes us at least passably legal and that’s really all we ask.

We are now on the road to St. Petersburg, it is after midnight, there’s 300km ahead of us, potholed roads, the new challenge of Cyrilliac, and a second visit from the Polish electrical storm, which has the flooded streets. But we are in Russia and that seems like a darn good accomplishment for now.


2 Responses

  1. Congratulations on getting into Russia! I can’t wait for more stories and shuffling! Love you Alisha!

  2. Rock on Team Annabelle! (At least that’s how I see you all). You seem to be making great progress. What are you eating?


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