Autumn in Moscow region. Fresh air and campfire smoke. Birch, pine, oak – sprigs of yellow leaves among the green like poetry. Rutted roads, cross-marked springs, fist-fulls of yellow sun flowers, sloping wooden houses.
We went to visit our cousin at his half-finished dacha this weekend. It was fantastic to drive far away from Moscow’s noise and dirty air, and get our fill of Russian Indian Summer (Women’s Summer or бабье лето). We got to go for a bike ride, and explore an old wooden house – a place that Stalin presented to a Soviet opera singer back in the day.
The best part of the evening, though, was the long dinner and conversation under a vine-covered roof in our cousin’s backyard. There was Spanish wine, platters of fruit, roasted vegetables and pepper-rubbed lamb shashlyk. We talked until two in the morning, roasted marshmallow’s and drank tea from a pine cone-fired samovar. Autumn bliss!
This is what I love about Russia!