Monday, 18 January 2010

Not dead, just in Moscow...

What better way to start my Russian blogging life than to nick the title of this post from the last line of my sis's most recent entry on here?(And don't get me started on what she wrote - does she not know how hard it is to find Kleenex Balsam tissues in Moscow? If I'm to avoid even more attractive nose-chapping than I'm already experiencing in the current temp of -20 degC, I'm going to have to send to England for supplies if she keeps saying nice stuff about me...)

So. Here I am in snowy Russia and finally - FINALLY -back on line, after nearly 2 weeks without internet access. Hal-le-xxxxxxx- ujah! I never thought I was that dependant on the world wide web, but guess what? Turns out lack of access to it was rather like losing an arm; I'm something of a basket case without it. However, all that's behind us now, and you're not interested in angst and missed opportunities for blog posts, I imagine.

Instead, here are some observations that I've made over the last couple of weeks;

Never - but NEVER - leave your workaholic Husband in charge of one of your two sets of movers for the day whilst you go and ferry your children from one set of grandparents to the other. Or rather, don't do it if you don't want to find that due to the fact he has had his head buried in his laptop (feel free to substitute alternative word for 'laptop' if you feel it's merited), half the stuff you had earmarked to be sent to Moscow has been packed by your over-zealous movers and now is actually in 'deep storage' somewhere near Reading. But then again, who needs a tv, anyway? Or a duvet cover? Or a myriad other items, including but not limited to Husband's snow boots? (Actually, that last one is poetic justice, since when I sent mine and the boys over with him before Christmas to be here waiting for us when we arrived he scoffed at my over-preparations and told me we'ld never need them. 10" of snow says differently, I think. And gosh, are my toes warm and toasty....)

Never move over Christmas. It might seem like a good idea at the time, but it is not. 'Nuff said.

Never trust your Husband when he says that there really isn't that much to do before the movers arrive in 2 days time. There is that much to do, and you will only have yourself to blame for having finished up early the night before to go and see Sherlock Holmes (which I highly recommend) when you find yourself sitting outside your self-storage facility (shut due to the unprecedented happening of 2cm of snow falling in Slough) at 5pm the night before you fly, with a car full of crap and nowhere to put it.

Be nice to your mother in law. You may need her spare room - for storage - some time.

Always double check the terminal you're flying from. Even if your beloved says that Aeroflot - and let's face it, given the fact that he travels to Russia most weeks, he should know - always fly from Terminal 2, just make sure. Especially when it transpires that for the last 3 months he's actually been flying with British Midland so was unaware that in the intervening period Terminal 2 HAS CLOSED FOR RENOVATION, FOR FXCK'S SAKE! Otherwise you may well find yourself rushing to find another taxi to take you, your beloved, your two children, 5 hefty suitcases, 54 small hand luggage bags and a rucksack-full of stress to Terminal 4 with only 2 minutes left to check in before the flight closes.

Having said all that, do try not to let the deep crevasses in your self-composure show too much. Or no more than will ensure you are bought a new laptop at Duty Free as an apology whilst you wait to board your plane, at any rate.

Stay tuned for more observations - on life in Moscow next time, I promise. And I just wanted to say thanks :- to my sister for writing such fantastic posts, and to everyone who's stopped by for making such great comments, and for harrassing her into restarting her blog which I'm on my way to check out now. So all it took for her to get writing again was for me to move to Moscow. If I'd known that, I would have done it much earlier...


  1. Great you are back online I bet we will all look like a lot of wussie moaners compared to your snowfall stories. Keep up the good work enjoy reading your blog so much though this is the first time I have commented. Chris

  2. It's been a pleasure looking after your sister while you've been away. As a newby blogger I had only just discovered your blog before you disappeared anyway.
    Looking forward to reading both blogs now.
    By the way, keep well away from libraries in Moscow - you have too many layers to remove in that climate!!

  3. Welcome back online, woohoo at the new laptop.

  4. Welcome back ! Glad you've arrived ok and even have a new laptop

    Can't wait to read all about it

  5. Yeah!! You're alive! and well. FYI -- we need to chat. Turns out one of your ex-colleagues is one of my friends at theschool gt!

  6. Sorr about the typos -- my keyboard is sticking!

  7. you have captured the stress and horror of moving overseas perfectly my dear!! the last thing I remember the night before we left for china was popping a bottle of champagne at 2am (we'd been hoovering to get the deposit back until that point). The next thing i remember is waking up with a heinous hangover and announcing that I wasn't going.

    loved the terminal 2 thing and the snow!!

    fab to have you back online, looking forward to hearing more detail, daily life, school for the boys, particularly interested in any surgically enhanced, fur-clad specimens you might see...

    ps and you were ENTITLED to the laptop.

  8. Glad to hear that you are safe and sound in Moscow despite a rather eventful journey there! Can't wait to hear about the rest of your adventures in Moscow :) x

  9. This blog is about to become even more funny and interesting...something tells me.

  10. Good to hear from you again! Been waiting for tales of your move, but oh my goodness, I didn't expect so much stress! Looking forward to hearing more real soon.

  11. Well, welcome to Russia...a little late on wishing you that, but it isn't my fault! :-) Sounds like it was quite an adventure and that we will read many more to come!

  12. Glad to hear you have survived the move. Think I would have had major sense of humour failure at terminal cockup - you clearly have the patience of a saint! Looking forward to hearing more about life in Moscow. x

  13. Good to hear you have arrived safely if not uneventfully. The new laptop is small recompense for the aggravation in my opinion. Had to laugh at the packing snafu! Can't say I didn't warn you ;-) With our packing mishap at least I realised what had happened before the shipping container was full so could retrieve the three not-wanted-in-Oz boxes which were intended for a friend.

    -20C sounds almost tempting as we have just endured 2 days of +40C! But really only almost - possibly a quick 5 minute icy blast would have done the trick mid-afternoon!. Not much fun but it's better today.

    Looking forward to your further adventures in the Frozen North.

  14. hurrah! You'[re back online.
    You are a model of forbearance, I can hear how much you may have wanted to kill certain persons. I hope the new laptop was a good enough present to make up for it.
    Is it a lovely mac? Ok, I'm being a nerd, I know.
    Very much looking forward to hearing all about the adventures and also to keeping up with your sister - she was fab.

  15. Yay! You're back.

    Suffice to say I have missed you.

    Hugs and toasty toes,
    LCM x

  16. Welcome to Eastern Europe. Another one comes to join the party. Hooray, you are back - and online so fast, you are doing well. You deserve laptop, and there should be more grovelling to be done to atone for sins. Can't wait to hear your stories! x

  17. Hooray!! you are back.. and in fine fettle. That is HILARIOUS.. I have been LOL all through it. Stress levels sounded on the up in the Potty HQ over the move.

    At least you've arrived. And just think of all that fine vodka, cashmere, fur, caviar, culture that you will be soaking up over the next two years.

    Can't wait to read more. I hope I can keep you in the loop on west London action so you don't get too homesick.

    BM xx

  18. Thanks God you're back! Now I can get to my humdrum life and live vicariously through you!
    Still missing you more than I can write.

  19. Very glad to have you back online.
    Well done for surviving the journey and the move.
    I'm looking forward to reading your siberian missives filled with chilly stories from a far off land.
    x jo

  20. Thanks Chris - for reading, AND for commenting.

    Trish, good advice. Unfortunately I read it after taking Boy #1 to the library this afternoon, rather than before, but still, thanks...

    MH - yes - about time, eh?

    MaM, don't worry - I'm sure you'll have Russia fatigue before too long!

    Working Mum, thanks.

    Thanks Lisa!

    Modern, alive - yes. Well...?

    Pig, I SO was - entitled, that is. Always help to throw some guilt in on top of that fact though, don't you find?

    PHM, be careful what you wish for.

    EPM - I'll do my best (no pressure then...)

    NVG - less about patience of a saint, more that I had simply shut down all but the most vital life functions... (That's my coping mechanism in times of stress!)

    Sharon, ooh, +40 or -20deg C? Do you know, I just can't choose between them?

    Hi Mothership, sorry to disappoint but no mac. I decided that I just couldn't face dealing with one on top of everything going on - so stuck with a boring old pc. And I like to think I'm creative?

    Thanks LCM - hope all is well in your world?

    Brit - yes, arrived just before you leave (is that still the plan, btw?). I never seem to make the cutting edge...

    Thanks BM - and never a truer word (about the homesickness, that is, rather than the caviar and furs!)

    FK, thanks - for everything. Will call to bend your ear again soon. PMx

    Kim, thanks (see if you're still saying that when in two weeks time I'm still wittering on about the cold...)

    Jo, thankyou! And apparantly Siberia is even colder than here - so I may hold off on popping up there for a visit for a mo...

  21. Great to have you back. I'm glad you survived the move. Now I'm looking forward to your observations on life in Moscow!

  22. Naughty, naughty hubby! Hope he's made it all up to you ;-)

  23. Oy, you have exhausted me completely... your sis did a bang-up job by the way and I am in awe of your move... moving that far is epic without the kids and the wrong terminal and the storage mess ups... so how IS the Moscow Ikea?


Go on - you know you want to...