Archive for February, 2016

Lakes of Smolensk region

February 3, 2016 Leave a comment

Smolensk is a long way from any sea or ocean but we’ve got a bunch of lakes here. Some are small, others are very small, there’s a few relatively big ones. Non are too big though. Big here means like a few kilometres across.

But again, those are all relative terms. When I was a kid and was for the first time taken to the Spring Lake in Red Forest I thought it was big, there’s an island in the middle. It’s not really a lake but a pond. I imagine it used to be a swamp with a bunch of springs and they just put a dam in there and it filled up with water. The lake’s deep near the dam but on the other side of the island it’s so shallow you can walk across it.

My parents also took me to the so called Curved Lake. It’s also in Red Forest, only on the other side of the highway, closer to the Dnieper. During high water it actually becomes part of the Dnieper.

As I got older, we started going to other lakes, bigger and father away, like Quarries Lake in Olshya. There’s no real public transport there so the only way to get there is by car. It’s not really that big, but is considerably bigger than any of the lakes closer to the city.. And it’s deep too, sort of. Kasplya is even bigger and father but it’s kind of shallow, although the lake itself is fairly large and quite picturesque. It’s pretty old too, dating back to the last ice age.

Last but not least is Kuprino. We searched for it several years, never managing to find it but last year we did find it at last. It’s not really a lake but rather a large swamp. Most of it is overgrown with all sorts of vegetation and it’s really shallow, a paradise for duck hunters and fishing enthusiasts. There’s lots of all forms of life there and it’s fairly large too, but you can’t really swim in it.

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The move

February 2, 2016 Leave a comment

It was a relatively long time ago but I’ve always wanted to write about it.

My parents and I were living in this old apartment. It wasn’t particularly good, for example my room’s window looked out onto the street that had gotten quite busy lately, to the point where it was becoming uncomfortable. I started waking up because of the noise of the vehicles passing right in front of my window. I ended up getting a new plastic window. It cut down on the noise somewhat but still whenever a large truck would craw past, it felt like a minor earthquake.

One day these real estate agents turned up on our doorstep and said they had a guy who wanted to buy our apartment and converted it into a shop of some sort. My mom was against it but my dad and I were all for it. That guy then disappeared but the real estate guys hung around, the whole thing went on for almost two years and eventually they did find this other guy who bought our apartment and they also found us a different place.

Anyway the point is that for over a year we knew we would eventually move out of that old place and I remember how, whenever I’d be coming back to that old apartment I would imagine that we’d already moved and that I was only going back there because I’d forgotten we’d moved. It was just this weird game I played, because I thought I’d feel nostalgic about it. The thing is, though, that after we moved I never really felt particularly nostalgic about that old apartment until very recently when I had a dream about it, but again it wasn’t nostalgia for the apartment but rather for an earlier, somewhat happier time in my life when I was younger and more carefree.

Life is weird that way.

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