Sunday, January 29, 2017

Sunday, January 29th

Well, it's been a long week!! We arrived in Moscow last Monday night at 5:30 PM and have been running, sleeping off jet lag, shopping, at the office, meeting new people, figuring out the Metro and Uber, walking, shopping, walking, shopping, oh, and did I mention walking??  Other senior couples say they walk up to five miles a day here.  Not quite prepared for that marathon! ;-)

So many people went to so much trouble to prepare for us here.  A temporary apartment was found, food purchased so we'd have some when we arrived, bedding and kitchen tools rounded up, dinners hosted, events with other senior couples set up, a driver who took us to several stores, and to our apartment, and to the office, more shopping at a Costco-like place, and many emails and phone calls to make sure that we are comfortable.  It has been amazing!!

We went a whole week without internet in spite of the fact that we are in a very new building.  Of course, everyone would assume that it would be available and provided.  So we have been off the grid while people were wondering if we'd arrived safely.  Sorry about that!  But we got a router yesterday and now we're back in business!

Because we usually sleep off the first day or two on any international trip, we usually do not encouner too much jet lag.  But since we went into high speed mode immediately, I have really felt it this time.  We slept most of this weekend in order to catch up, so we are feeling much better now.

The Metro here is amazing.  It moves millions of people each day, more than other major cities combined, we are told.  Each station we have seen (which is not too many yet) is decorated in beautiful paintings or chandeliers or tiles.  Moscow is huge as the largest city in Europe.  We live on the upper NW of Moscow, apparently just outside the second ring road around the city.  Traffic is here amazing; one colleague in the office can spend 2-3 hours per day one way coming into the office.  Apparently a the Europe East Area (EEA) offices used to be closer to central Moscow, but they recently moved up to the NW area because of the difficulty and time it took to get to it.

We love our little studio apartment.  It has tons of storage and it is cozy.  I brought some little items from home to put on the counters and Russ made pictures of all of our children and grandchildren so we could hang them up.  It might be too small to spend the entire time here but it is much easier and quicker to clean than home!  We will move to a two-bedroom, two-bath apartment closer to the office next month when Thom and Kathryn Christensen return to the US.

I am inheriting Thom's work which deals with real estate issues in Ukraine and the registration of local religious organizations in order to comply with EEA laws.  It should be very interesting work.  The other lawyers in the office are great and very helpful.  I hope I will be able to help.

Russ will be working with the mission presidents to help the young volunteers here.  There are 14 missions so there are lots of young volunteers.

We will leave Russia in about 90 days for a visa trip.  We will likely go to Riga, Latvia, and have to stay for ten days while the paperwork is accomplished.  I have seen pictures of it and it is beautiful!  We will also go to Georgia in June for a religious freedom conference.  So that will be very interesting.  I was in The Hague in the Peace Palace in April 2011 when the International Court of Justice ruled on a case between Georgia and Russia.  It was very interesting.

We hope you are all well and happy!!  Love from Russia!!


  1. So happy to hear that all is well. I have heard about that traffic and don't envy you that. Continued good luck and health to a great couple!

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  3. Sister Crane ;) you are definitely going to be an asset over there. God bless, stay warm and stay safe. You're in our thoughts and prayers