Saturday, 24 September 2011

The only way to see Moscow

There are around 3 million cars blasting around Moscow's roads each day - and believe me, you notice it. Even in the heart of the city, roads with 8 to 10 lanes of traffic are not uncommon.
Saturday night in Moscow
(Picture from EuroRoss)
Now in our time in Moscow we've done boat tours, walking tours and museum audio-guides - but last night we saw Moscow the way it should be seen: in a blazing fast black BMW.
Stuff your tour bus
It was thanks to two fantastic friends of my Dad's - Igor and Natalia - who incredibly kindly gave up their Friday night to show Sammy and me around the city. At speed. With Igor at the wheel, we flew around the concentric ring-roads encircling the city - up to the amazing view from Moscow State University, down to Novedivichy Convent, across town to the Ostankino TV tower, and round the Kremlin from every possible angle. A tour that would have taken all day in a coach was blitzed through in just a couple of turbo-charged hours.

Unfortunately, I hadn't realised that we were going on a tour - so I hadn't brought my camera. Which meant I was reduced to taking blurry shots on my iPhone, and cursing my own stupidity. So here is the stunning vista from the State University:
It was utterly amazing in real life, I swear
This is the unutterably gorgeous Novedivichy Convent, by starlight:
It was way less blurry at the time
And here's a rather better picture of one of the Convent's turrets:
The pictures are better if you're up close
Fortunately Sammy had brought her point-and-shoot camera, which takes much better pictures than the iPhone. Unfortunately, Sammy hasn't really figured out how to focus her camera at night. So here's Moscow State University:
There was not, in fact, an earthquake going on
And here's a cute photo of me, Natalia and Igor posing with some metal ducks (a truly bizarre gift to the Russian people from Barbara Bush):
Ali's problem is: he lacks focus
Fortunately, however, Sammy's camera worked just fine for the stunning shot across the lake to Novedivichy - so here's a really beautiful picture of one of the best views in the city:

So we want to say a huge thank-you to Igor and Natalia, for an unforgettable evening. And if you're ever in Moscow - they're the fastest (and funniest) tour guides in town.

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