Back in Moscow, jet lagged and cold. I’ve been so exhausted since I returned from Malaysia to the point where I took the metro with good intentions of visiting somewhere and then on arrival saw on the map it was a 20 minute walk to where I wanted to go so just turned around and went back. Then had a nap. 35 rubles well spent.
On Tuesday evening I had a new life experience…an opera! Never been to an opera but thought when in Moscow do as the Romans do..or the Muscovites whoever. So the tale begins at the box office for said opera where I failed to purchase a ticket due to not being able to speak Russian. This language issue is really frustrating and there are some days where I feel alone because I can’t communicate with anyone I come across. Couldn’t get a ticket because the woman just kept saying “No” over and over again. Found out you can buy a ticket online, got a seat, and all was well until the next evening when I went to the opera.
First issue- walked in wrong direction from metro station. There’s numbered exits at the metro stations but unless you know the name of the street/ can read Russian you could end up anywhere.
Second issue- went to the wrong theatre entrance and was shooed out but didn’t understand why so stood helplessly outside for a bit and then eventually found another way in.
Third issue- couldn’t really read where my row and seat was…well I knew it was row 2 seat 30 but of what section? It said amphitheatre in cyrillic but then there were no signs for that in the theatre so I went to the wrong section and was turned away again and then they wouldn’t let me in unless I took my coat off and carried it rather than wearing it. Needless to say I was sweating and anxious by the time I sat down in what I couldn’t be certain was actually my seat.
And so on to the opera itself. The opera was in German with Russian subtitles. I could work out some words like love, my, we, I have, I am etc but by the time I’d tried to translate the rest I was about 20mins behind. I cannot tell you with any certainty what the opera was about. Here is what I thought…
There was a death and people went to a funeral (maybe a family but all a similar age so not clear), they went home. Curly haired woman was sad and put on the coat and shoes of assumed dead lover. Then a ginger man with glasses took them off her and put them into a clear bag. Then they had a meal and a man (maybe a ghost of dead family member?) said some stuff to a blonde woman but no one else reacted to this hence the ghost theory. There was a letter and someone was mad about it and I know this because the Russian subtitles had a lot of !!!!!! A lot of the time they walked around in slow motion. I don’t know how it ended.
There was a group of Scottish men sitting behind me and I wondered if they were getting a more detailed understanding of the storyline than I was. About half way through one of them started snoring so that answered that. This made me think of when I went to the Lion King with my family and a man fell asleep and leant on my step dad’s arm and snuggled him. My mum was crying with laughter but I didn’t realise what was happening and thought she was deeply moved by Mufasa’s death. Thinking about this made me laugh out loud in the middle of the silent opera theatre and I zoned out of the show completely and missed some of the mourning and sadness.
It was a fun experience and the Bolshoi Theatre is amazing inside. It was a pretty cool place to sit and not really have a clue what was going on. I could appreciate the opera singing and the orchestra.
Other things I’ve done:
Looked at sky scrapers because they’re huge and mesmerising.
Took some more sunset photos.
Went back to GUM because it’s a pleasing place to hang out.
Saw the Moscow State University building- impressive and makes you want to build it out of lego.
Had a lovely time looking at art and sculptures at the Pushkin Gallery. I spent some time giving evil teacher stares to obnoxious Russian children who wouldn’t stop interrupting their teacher/ tour guide/ adult and I actually tutted when one of them started poking the adult to get their attention. “Please don’t touch me” is one of my favourite teacher phrases.
Enjoyed the views from the roof of the Central Children’s Store even though it was raining heavily and the wind was blowing the rain into my eyes so I couldn’t really see much.
Went to Danilovskiy market for a wander, had an immense cheesecake and found an English speaking Russian man to chat to about literature (I was reading 1984). This place has excellent food choices.
Next stop, back to God’s own country for 10 days…Yorkshire ❤ Cannot wait to see this baby and celebrate my birthday- which isn’t for a few weeks but it’s a birthday month right?