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March - April 2002
March is a joyful month in Moscow; this year, more than ever. All the snow had already disappeared in February, and the sun was shining above not yet really clean, but at least not muddy streets and squares. April brought almost summer heat...
The first flowers and green trees of upcoming season of course can be found in the malls (and GUM, their flagship), they always sell us what they believe is the future. Bright light and clear air is most welcome after winter twilight and the hazy time of melting snow
Just the right time to get first pale but visible suntan while lazily walking through streets full of birds' chirping. Just the right time to think about where to spend May vacations (combination of weekends, Labor Day, Victory Day, and a few "sick leaves" in real life sums up into 10 days one can spend out of the office). Just the right time to change clothes and enjoy lighter outfit.
...Just the right time to present you another set of photos, pictures of the city stretching and warming up before summer exercises...
As always in my stories here, you can zoom in on any picture. Just click on an image and a larger and better quality photo will open. Many of the photos are worth looking at in postcard size.
Apartment blocks are now available in different classes and price ranges, standard and relatively cheap ones - and unique luxurious houses with larger apartments and higher prices.
With new houses come new cars - and Moscow is more and more suffering from endless traffic jams. A few new freeways of course look nice and are a pleasure to use, but cannot solve the problem of a an old city with radial structure and old narrow streets.
Bright light and tinted glass fill the city with reflections. Some are a bit strange.
And of course spring is the time for cleaning and washing - and these guys in the photo on the right are not just climbers - they of course have the necessary training, and do real sports for fun, - but here they make money with their skills. And the ropes do look impressive!
The row of photos below also is about the same bridge... More cleaning, a wonderful view from the open deck, and the curiosity of a teenager exploring the sculpture in front of the tower.
And on the banks near the bridge a huge construction site is alive - once almost frozen ambitious project of Moscow City, the area of new tall skyscrapers for offices and government structures, is in progress...
What are Muscovites doing on such a nice weekend? Depends on their habits (they do differ a lot!), moods and resources. Some spend time in the malls, others prefer lines to the Christ The Savior Cathedral to those in the shops - or simply enjoy hot dogs in still chilly air.
But of course political or religious fanatics are small groups... It's much more typical for a Muscovite to have fun and relax on a weekend - like the people on the benches you see on the left.
And also Moscow is full of guests and visitors of all sorts at this time - because it spectacular! And flocks of excursion groups are seen all over the city, with concentration noticeably growing in the downtown and around the Kremlin.
Towers and modern turrets are also a part of Moscow - or Russian, for that matter, - tradition. The row above is just another illustration of this well-known fact.
It's a bit early to swim yet - the ice was covering city ponds until the end of March - but now workers replace "Do not step on ice!" with "No Swimming!" warnings on Chistye Prudy (Clear Ponds) boulevard...
Those who can afford paying for the boat ride ticket enjoy the city from a freshly repainted boat, homeless enjoy the sun for free dozing on the warm wood of berths for these boats.
Hopefully, some of you liked it. The next one will be already from a green and hot Moscow of early summer. See you then!
Andrey - firstname.lastname@example.org
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