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Park walk, park fire Empty Park walk, park fire

Post  darkhelmet on Thu Aug 05, 2010 1:43 pm

I left the comfort of my air conditioned living room to take junior for a walk in a local park in Moscow. I open the front door and the heat hits us, as if opening an oven door. The smell of acrid burning fills our noses. The heat and smell is relentless, unforgiving and still refuses to leave us. We make our way to the park. I see the same people in the streets. I pass a car with black windows, that allow you see through and I see the same man, I saw last week on the same walk, although this time he is with a different woman. He is receiving his afternoon blow job. It must be a weekly tradition for him to have this relief in the same street every week. Muscovite's fly by in their black air con boxes on wheels, tinted windows, mobiles glued to an ear, in their hurry to the next deal. They drive the usual gas guzzling suspects, such as BMW's, Mercedes and Rovers.

As we arrive at the park, I spot a small fire on the banks of the lake or "pond" as the Russians call it. The grass on the bank is yellow and dry. A group of Russian teens sit on the bank by the fire, indifferent to the fire and smoke that burns next to them. I leave junior in his pushchair, grab an empty wine bottle form a trash can and go down to the lake to fill it with water to dowse the fire. After 6 bottles, the fire is out, the teens continue to chat and frolic and I, the invisible foreign hero, continues on his hot way. Before I go, I ask them in English why they did nothing? They smirk and ignore me. Teens, perhaps they are no different in Moscow as they are in Milan, Manchester or Madrid? Responsibility evades them, life goes on. Was I the same? No.

I put junior on a swing and pushed him back and forth, forgetting how hard I am pushing him, still tense and annoyed, I see the same nannies and mothers at the play ground. After forty minutes, I have had enough and we head home past the drunks on benches, to the sanctuary of our cool oasis that is home. affraid

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