The breakfast was something extraordinary, babushkas frying eggs and pancakes, different slurries, sausages, an entire table filled with assorted sweets et.c. And to top it all off a little lady is sitting at a keyboard belting out tunes such as “Popcorn” and Vivaldi’s Spring (allegro). There are also some awesome “boobie buns” filled with some sort of fungus.
Following breakfast a few of us (me, Mats, Håkan and Kimberly) hooked up to go see the Art Muzeum park where they supposedly put all the old communist era statues. There weren’t as many statues as I’d hoped, but still plenty to go around. We bought entry tickets from a golden-toothed lady in a tiny shack and went spelunking.
At one point we asked an old lady if there were any statues of Gagarin around. She said there weren’t and went on to dive us an earful of history, such as why Ivan the Great is depicted at the helm of a ship. Apparently he went to Holland as a youngster to study ship building and then brought back that knowledge to Russia so that they could build a fleet (for some reason they didn’t have one prior to that).
When the lady finally let us go we sat down to have a beer and some ice cream in the sun (if I haven’t mentioned it earlier, we have fantastic weather, 20 something degrees and sunny), before walking back to the Red Square for some Russian style kebab (also cheap, about a 100 rubles (25 sek)). I missed out on Lenin since half of us had already seen him, not that I mind that much though, I’m having great fun anyways! =P
We also went to see another one of the Metro stations, where they’ve put chandeliers in the ceiling. Pretty, but I liked the one with the 80 statues better. Then back to the hotel to get ready for the transit to the railroad station. Arriving there we had to wait for an hour for the train, fending off pickpockets as best as we could.
Excitement was high when we finally boarded and the Russian champagne was brought out (denting the ceiling in two of the coupes). Much revelry ensued and Matilda broke out the guitar (man, that girl can sing!), heaps of fun!
The standard of the train is comparable to an old SJ train really. Our cart hosts keeps the samovars with hot water (by burning coal, old school…) for cups of soup, coffee and tea. The beds are surprisingly comfy as well, a bit on the hard side perhaps, but I don’t mind that. Even Peter at 193 cm thought they were nice.