Wednesday, December 19, 2007
The City's all Decked-Out
Last night I got a chance to take some pictures of the New Year's decorations in the city's center. I'm so used to Christmas colors in the USA being pretty much red, white and green. Not here! I was quite surprised by how many white, blue and red (the Russian flag) trees I saw... Certainly NOT a coincidence after the recent elections, in anticipation of the upcoming Presidential elections, and the trees look an awful lot like the posters I keep seeing around Moscow for "United Russia," Putin's party, "thanking everyone for their support" during the last elections.
As patriotic as we are in the USA, I can't recall ever seeing red, white and blue trees in the USA--even after 9/11 when we were living in New York City! There are many other "themed" trees: some inspire excitement about the upcoming Sochi, Russia Olympic Winter Games; some that instill a feeling of pride in Russian heritage by drawing on folk designs; some are actually advertisements (Ferrero Rocher chocolates--the yummy ones that come wrapped up in gold balls); some just mean to dazzle you with light shows.
Here's a slideshow of pictures I took of Manezhnaya Ploschad (outside of Red Square); inside Red Square (with a view of St. Basil's, the Kremlin, GUM department store, the Historical Museum and the ice rink smack dab in the middle (plan to go there when we're back! It's COOL! It blocks the full view of the square, though--it's much bigger than it appears in my video); across the street from the Bolshoi Theater (under renovation, and with a cool light structure made to look like water coming from the fountain); and Kutuzovsky Prospect ( couldn't get any pics on Tverskaya--crazy traffic--or near Poklonnaya Gora/Victory Park--bummer!!).
The Moscow government really goes all-out when it comes to decorating for holidays... These fake, tall trees COVERED in lights are everywhere! It's quite beautiful. Tverskaya is also draped in lights; very, very pretty. I hope they'll still be up when we'll get back from America.