This is my first day of vacation. My boyfriend Kostya and I decided to go on a bus tour around part of Russian Golden Ring. There will be posts from that trip in my own journal, but here is the day before tour when we flew to Moscow and spent a day there.
We had an early flight, so had to get up before 6am in order to get ready and come to airport with time to spare. That also had an unpleasant consequence of leaving us sitting there for over an hour, but honestly I prefer to wait than to rush and risk being late.
Our airport is quite small and situated in pretty much in the middle of the city. That cuts down travel time but definitely is not safest idea.
A plane from different airline that is also heading to Moscow several minutes ahead of our one. But they are a bit more expensive. It is quarter to 9 and we have boarded plane.
There are two ways for planes to take off - straight over city or in the opposite direction over fields and former villages, which is a preferred one. So I didn't get a chance to see the city, but I enjoyed seeing countryside and this time I even managed to see where our dacha is. But this photo is just a random piece of Irtish that I want to try and find on maps.
And after 3 and a half hours flight we are in Moscow in Sheremetyevo Airport. And it is once again a bit over 9 am. Unlike in Omsk it took us quite a while to walk to the exit from the terminal we arrived to. And then there was 40 minutes ride on aeroexpress - a special train - to reach the city.
There was also a bit of excitement during landing - our third neighbor was a pregnant woman and she was all right until landing, when she suddenly nearly fainted. And because we were already going down, it took a few calls to flight attendants before they reacted, but then they took care of her and contacted ground services to look after her, as she had a second flight in just two hours.
Well, by the time we came out from Belorussky railway terminal it was already past 11am in local time and past 2pm for us, so we found an incredibly nice and cheap canteen, had lunch there and then headed over to our hotel. It is quite a distance away from center of the city, but I picked it because our bus tour starts a few minutes away from it. So we got down to Metro. Fortunately it was midday on Monday and there were few people there (relatively, I still remember the time I was literally carried out by exiting crowd, fortunately in right direction).
Our hotel, we were in different building, but they are similar.
And despite slightly shabby look, this was most comfortable hotel on this trip, while other two looked much nicer and had bigger and prettier rooms, they turned out to have small annoyances and some nice looks were only cosmetics unlike here.
[And our room, if anyone interested]And our room, if anyone interested - small and a bit shabby-looking, but clean and in good repair, with solid furniture and bathroom is much better than I expected.
While Kostya took a small nap - he is not used to travelling at all - I went for a small walk around hotel. Both to stretch my legs and to see if there is a good and not overly expensive place to go to dinner.
And this is a sight that I didn't expect - a woman with a pony.
A small beautiful park nearby, aptly named "Church Hill", because it is right next to an old Alekseevskoye cemetery and it's church.
And a short peek into Space Park which is arguably a part of BDNKh. I took a much longer walk on last day, but for today I didn't spent too much time there.
At 3 pm, when I got back, Kostya was rested and ready to brave crowds again. So we headed out to Red Square. Weather turned to worse, but it didn't start to rain yet. And so we spent time sight-seeing - Kostya mostly, it is not my first time here. As usual there are some constructions being (dis)assembled for some event or other.
Kostya was a bit sad that Lenin's Mausoleum was closed. I never went there and I am not really interested, so I was less upset.
And here I am, in front of Saint Basil's Cathedral.
A short break in Alexander Gardens before clouds and hints of rain chased us away. I love this garden, although it was more crowded than usual.
By around 8pm we were both somewhat rested (and more than ready to crash with 3-hour difference) and wanted to get dinner and go to bed. But it was heavily raining and there was no signs of it stopping any time soon. So we changed plans and went to the nearest hotel restaurant. That was a bit more expensive than I expected (and a whole lot more expensive than Kostya expected as he didn't know Moscow prices), but it was worth it.
And while we were at restaurant rain have stopped and so we decided on an evening walk, along the same rout that I took during day. My phone is bad for taking low-light photos, so only one photo came out acceptable.
After that we came back to our room and went to bed at some time past 10pm, as tomorrow we will have to get up early for our bus.