Sunday, March 9, 2008

Afternoon at Kropotkinskaya

Here's a random post with some pictures I took on Thursday afternoon. Our Brownie troop (American Girl Scouts) met (well, was supposed to meet... more on that in a minute...) near Kropotkinskaya metro on Ostozhenka Street (a very famous street lined with beautiful, beautiful buildings). This neighborhood is teeming with history!

The sun was truly shining for the first time in weeks and I had to take pictures. After a doctor's appointment (my pneumonia is clearing up well), I stopped at Starbucks on the Old Arbat and then walked down Gogolevsky Bulvar to the Kropotkinskaya metro. The busy street is divided with a pretty pedestrian path down the middle; that's where my pictures began.

If you open the slide show to see it in full view, you'll also see my photo captions. Here, however, is a quick synopsis:
  • The monument of the soldier features horses swimming in water behind the boat. I forgot to write down the name of the war hero; sorry!
  • Note the wooden playground equipment; it's full of splinters and in disrepair, but isn't it cute??
  • The homes in this area are painted in such a variety of colors--and their trim is exquisite. Note all the moldings, carvings and contrast-color detailing. I think I'll do set of notecards featuring "windows of Moscow" for holiday gifts next year.
  • In warmer weather this pedestrian path is packed with artists selling their paintings.
  • You then approach the subway stop; these shops before it are relatively new and it's convenient! You can see the domes of Christ the Saviour Cathedral in the background.
  • Then you see the cathedral. It was razed by Stalin the 1931 to make a statement about the role of religion in the USSR; the grounds then housed open-air swimming pools. The cathedral was rebuilt in the 1990's.
  • The marble from the destroyed cathedral was used to build the Kropotkinskaya metro station.
  • This intersection is always very busy; I'm not sure why traffic was so light that day!
  • The statue is of Engels. The old red building behind him is from the 17th century; it belonged to Fedor Golovin.
  • An Orthodox priest waits to buy ice cream. Russians eat more ice cream per capita than citizens of any other country--even during the cold winter months--and most people buy it from these outdoor kiosks.
  • The apothecary is called "Dr. Hundred Years." Most Russian stores have a sign above their doors with a no-frills statement of what they sell, for example: "Shoes;" "Children's Clothing;" "Medical Textbooks;" "Food."
The last thing I photographed was the pharmacy; how ironic... My phone then rang and Katya's teacher told me that she was ill and not able to come to Brownies. I rushed to the school and then brought her home. There are only five girls in the troop now and our meetings keep getting canceled because of illnesses and conflicting school vacations.


Rachael said...

Beautiful pictures! I hope I get to visit you again someday in Moscow!

Oh, and glad Katya was distracted enough by the return of her father, bearing surprises/gifts, that she's not mad at you forever! (I bet you're still dissappointed though.)

Annie said...

Another wonderful trip to Moscow. Weirdly I realize I feel though I were out looking at those houses without a proper coat on!! Or - eating ice cream in the winter. I LOVE Russian ice cream SO much. Nothing is as good, so no wonder Russians eat so much of it!

5Gustos said...

I just found your blog from peterspeapod. I'm glad I did! The kids and I are reading a book right now, titled "Ivan and the Moscow Circus". It's funny, but the character's little sister's name is Katya. I'll have to show these pictures to the kids and it will help to imagine the story setting in their heads. Thank you!