I'm writing this post from JFK, waiting for my flight home. This entire experience has been surreal. In some ways it feels that no time has passed at all, and that our class might not have even left for Russia yet. The airports have blurred together. On the other hand, it feels like a lifetime has been compressed into the 10 days we were away.
On our last day in Saint Petersburg we took a tour of the Hermitage with our guide Sergei, who I suspect of having memorized the name and story behind every piece in the museum. The lovely Nesli/Masha met up with us for the tour, and then joined us for a folk show that exhibited traditional songs and dances from the Cossack culture. She recommended a hip place called Pir O.G.I. where some of us went to grab a bite to eat as our last real meal in Russia. Пироги were the food of choice in Petersburg, whereas in Moscow we were frequent customers at Теремок, a fast food Russian style pancake place. In Moscow we ate блины every day out of frugality. I don't think that any of us will be able to look a блин in the face for a while.
More to come later when I get a chance to upload more pictures.