Saturday, May 8, 2010

Moscow - Red Square

We have already been in Paris for about a week, and have done so much here! Russia is very different from France, and I'm guessing all of Europe. A lot of people will say the french are rude, we haven't noticed this so much, we had one really snooty waitress, even though we were speaking french, but it seems like people in Russia are much more closed off. You don't smile at people when you walk down the sidewalk, they don't smile at you. I think that Paris is more friendly than people give it credit for, but more on Paris later.

Red Square was our favorite place to go in Moscow, we went about 4 times total. I already talked about the Kremlin, but there is a lot going on in this square in the center of Moscow. The first place we went to was GUM, which is the huge shopping mall with all the fancy shops. It was fun to walk around, but you wouldn't ever buy anything there, at least not on our budget. We ate the sushi place right outside of the mall twice. It was surprisingly cheap for Red Square, let alone Moscow.

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I love this, the girl was dressed like the model in the ad.

One of the places we went to that was really cool was a high end grocery store, a lot of neat stuff here, except for the piglets...I don't think I'll get that image out of my head anytime soon...But other than that they had amazing pastries, chocolates, teas (fun packaging), ect.

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Red Square is sprinkled with churches, one of which is St. Basils, probably the most famous church in Russia, at least it's pictured on all the guidebooks.

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Seth being totally sacrileg

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Inside the Kremlin, there is a square with a bell tower, and three churches. I wish I could remember the names of them, but each had a specific purpose for royalty. One for birth, one for the reign, and one for death.

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I love this little church!
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For sure the strangest thing we've done so far, and probably the strangest thing we'll do, is visit Lenin's Mausoleum, where they have Lenin's embalmed body on display. Of course no pictures were allowed but this is the outside,

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When you walk in it's very dark, and there are guards all around, it sort of feels like a haunted house, I kept expecting the guard to jump out at me. Once we got in to see the body, it was in a glass case and Lenin looked very waxy, he's been dead for 85 years or so. I kind of expected his body to jump up too, haha. They probably won't have him displayed much longer, which I think is a good thing. How awful would it be to have your body displayed to millions of people, most of them tourists like us? Not only that, but I Russia really needs to move past the communist thing, and I think finally burying Lenin will help with that.

Taking pictures of the people quickly became my favorite thing to do, and I love the kids! The Russian mothers are very protective and though it wasn't too cold, the children were always in hats, I don't think they let them leave the house without one. Sometimes they would be in full on snow suits.

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Babushka on the right.

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Ha, I love the poses people will do for pictures. I think these girls are Russian too. In the states you don't see a lot of posed pictures like this in front of monuments, at least I haven't noticed it.

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See? I'm not the only one that likes jumping pictures (seth). By the way, one of these birds totally flew in my face and it's wing hit my cheek, these Russian birds have no fear and they are scary!
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Poor monkey! I felt so bad for it, I think it's cruel to use animals that way.
Homer Simpson, gotta love the American culture you see throughout Europe, most of it is 50's stuff, like diners, Elvis, that kind of thing.

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Boots, boots, and more boots. Boots are huge in Europe, but in Russia they are high and pointy.

Kremlin and Gum again:
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  1. I do not think Seth is Sacrilege in that picture. He has a beard.

  2. Somehow this makes perfect sense.

  3. Maddy, do people ever get mad when you take their picture without asking? I always like to sneak pix myself of fat people in public (they don't like getting their picture ever taken, cause they are fat)... Do you follow me and Nathaniel's blog? It's good, so good.