Monday, June 6, 2011

The many meals of St Petersburg - June 6 2011

Margarita w/ chocolate profiteroles
Met cousins Vika and Margarita for lunch at a Japanese restaurant. The street was experiencing a power outage when we were there - somebody had earlier stopped by to warn them that the power was going out - and then it did - but nobody seems to know why. A sudden unexplained but prognosticated phenomenon. Their menu was pared down due to the situation. Sushi: yes. cooked rolls: no. soup: some. salad: yes. coffee: no. ice cream tempura: no. profiterole: yes. Young Margarita and I played games and passed notes to each other using the little bit of language knowledge we share.
The line at Pushkin's flat on his birthday

Wandered over to Pushkin’s apartment - he is a famous Russian poet of the people who was born 212 years ago today. This is the consecutive 3rd visit to St Petersburg we tried to make it to his apartment: two years ago we got lost and gave up. Last year they were closed for a holiday. This time the unexpected heat and torturously slow pace of the line caused us to give up after about 20 minutes of waiting. Maybe next year :-)

What was left of a Russian doughnut after the first bite

In need of an easy success, we popped into a traditional Soviet-style Pishka shop. Here they sell something similar to beignets for 30 cents USD and café au lait - like New Orleans without the beads. The doughnut was almost gone before Olga could take a photo of the evidence.

The evidence of several coffees ordered

Met with Aunt Maya at her favorite Viennese-style café: Coffeeshop Company. Apparently she is a regular there: the waitress knew where she would want to sit and asked if she wanted tea and/or Americano. Maya can't hear well, so out of habit, she simply replied yes. The tea and coffee arrived, Maya was slightly confused. She didn't know what to do with the coffee, so she ordered some milk. Meanwhile she started drinking it, and by the time the milk arrived, the coffee was gone, so she ordered an espresso to mix with the milk. When that arrived, she wasn't in the mood for coffee anymore, so both the espresso and the milk sat until we were leaving and I decided it could use a little pick-me-up. It was an odd but amusing little dinner.

Took the metro to Aunt Anya’s for supper to continue our chats we had when she visited us in San Francisco in April - some translated by Olga - others aided by Google. We had a lovely steak and veggie salad, Chilean red wine, 4 kinds of cakes, fruit salad, and more red wine. Then I passed out on her couch, and was awoken with some difficulty an hour or two later when it was time to go home.

Olga is with me in St Petersburg, but her mind is still in Sochi:

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