Back to Civilization

After our cushy two-night train ride, we arrived in Moscow. We decided to take the metro to our hotel, which was pretty easy, and avoided stressing over being ripped off by taxi drivers. It really helps having detailed street maps of Moscow in our GPS.

Our initial arrival at our hostel was a little sketchy — there were no signs whatsoever: we typed in a code at a blank door, went up a couple flights of stairs and walked through another blank door. Also, all the management was still asleep. We left the luggage, went out for breakfast (which was relatively expensive, especially the 200 ml of fresh-squeezed orange juice, the first this trip, for $12; it was also nice to have espresso instead of Nescafe), and when we got back, the managers were there. But the hostel’s Wi-Fi is deliciously fast and reliable and free, and we caught up with many postponed e-mail tasks (including figuring out why all of Ray’s e-mail had disappeared: it turned out his e-mail program at home had gotten launched and had sucked it all off the server). And now, as you see, we have finally gotten around to posting the large volume of text we’ve written since the last time we had a reasonable connection in Irkutsk.

Moscow subways are great. They’re cheap (60 cents a ride), they seem to run about every two minutes, and they’re not too hard to figure out even though there’s not much English. And many of the stations are very artfully decorated.

And even despite the catching up on the Internet, and waiting for the management, we got in some good touring and eating today. We’ll take some time and compose our thoughts and recollections and post them soon.