View from the top of the world (my office on the east side of Moscow).

BIG CITY LIFE

Who doesn’t like Big Dick? Sorry, that’s Mr. Big Dick, and if you don’t know him yet, you must check out his always-hilarious, often-wise and totally SFW (despite a NSFW name) blog The Big Dick Chronicles about life, love, sex, marriage and other adventures right away. Mr. BD also happens to live in  MiddleOfNowhere, Missouri…

Lavka2

MOSCOW: A PERFECT SUMMER DAY

My awesome Crimean vacation had to end some time and then it was back to work — and back to Moscow.  Contrary to popular assumptions about the discomforts of spending the summer in the city, there are some unexpected opportunities to be found in this experience, especially in Moscow. Last month I wrote about how…

Novy Svet

CRIMEA: FOUR REASONS TO GO*

*I swear that neither the Russian government nor my place of employment have paid me a kopek for the 10,000 words I have written about how “Crimea is Awesome” – though on second thought they should totally comp me this vacation. So, why did I go? I had specific goals for this vacation: regain some…

The Yalta onions - purple, flat and very sweet; eggplant and squash.

WHAT I ATE IN CRIMEA: Farmers’ Markets

For weeks before my Crimea trip my mother was imploring me to check out the farmers’ markets in Novy Svet and Sudak, for the freshest fruits and berries in all the land! The markets did not disappoint, and I tried everything from the in-season strawberries and raspberries, to homemade cheeses and sausages. I cannot even…

samosa

WHAT I ATE IN CRIMEA: Street Food

Here’s a little taste (hehe) of what the food and drink you can grab on the go in Crimea. Not pictured — all the draft beer, wine and kvas (traditional Russian bread-based soft drink) sold by the glass at small stands all throughout town and along the beach. All the cold beer you want, all…

assolle

WHAT I ATE IN CRIMEA: Restaurants

Every time I travel I expect to eat or drink at least one thing that blows me away, changes my whole food paradign, and/or becomes forever associated with that place or experience. Recently, in Florida, it was this cocktail and this dish. Before that it was salmon cream soup in Saint Petersburg and Hellboy pizza…

Famous Crimean Pine in Novy Svet

CRIMEA TRAVEL: the Highs and the Lows

My Crimean vacation wasn’t all rosé and roses. Let us dispense with the unpleasantries first. 1. Rain Nobody loves rain more than I do. It’s cozy. It’s romantic. It’s beautiful. But when rain takes over half of your summer vacation, it becomes a pain in the ass. In Crimea a day of heavy rain meant…

Nightfall at Novy Svet

CRIMEA, Day 18: Gone Fishing

I didn’t really know what to expect. I had been fishing before – pike fishing in the forest streams near Moscow and deep-sea fishing for 8-lbs somethings in the Atlantic. But what would the Black Sea bring? Whatever it was that I was not expecting, this was… something else. Left and right tiny silver creatures…