Today was my souvenir shopping day and Evgeny dropped me off at the entrance of a huge marketplace. It was full of alleys of stalls with people selling goods from pots and pans, to jeans, to shoes, to baggage. At first I wondered, oops, did I come to the wrong place and I wasn’t going to find any ‘souvenirs’, but just cheap goods. Anyhow, I started strolling along the street to see what there was to be offered, and I did find a cool day bag for cheap. I also found a few tshirts that weren’t as cheap as they should have been, but alas, they had some cool logowork with CCCP and Aeroflot written on them.. I then came to a gate that required and entrance fee, so I figured this is where all the souvenir goods were. As I entered, one of the first stalls I saw had all the Russia Laquerware boxes with hand painted fairytales on them. I thought they were great, and the detailed work of the artist’s brush was outstanding, but I didn’t want to sell out on the first booth, so I took the gamble to wander through to see more of the stalls. As I went along, stalls were selling the typical stacking dolls, Soviet Propaganda (cool posters, war paraphernalia, shirts, fur hats, pins, etc.) It was a true souvenir heaven. After going through the main strip, and barely feeling my hands anymore, I headed out to find some hot chocolate. It wasn’t easy as I thought it would be, and I found myself having to go to a hotel to find something. However, none of the hotel cafes were selling anything like that either, so I just got a bottle of water and ate a small snack while I wrote out a couple of postcards.
After thawing out, I decided to go back for the hunt and make some purchases after I had seen the items I wanted to get. I found a great book on the Moscow Subway system, which is one of my favorite things of Moscow. There’s something so interesting about the system, it feels like you’re walking back into time with the intricate tile artwork, the statues, the Soviet looking items throughout the stations. All the stations are different, so each one is interesting to look at. I then ended up going back to the first stall where I had seen the Laquerware previously, and bought quite a few things from here, as it’s a good that I hadn’t really bought on my previous trips to Russia. I was quite content with my purchases, but was getting frustrated about how cold I was, and having to carry all my things now! My fingers were numb, and carrying a bag on them just hurt. I then took the metro to Kurskaya to meet up with Evgeny. After my full day, I was pretty tired and we had a quiet night at home with a great meal as usual, and then bed.