What pegman saw : In the shadow of St Basil’s

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5 Red Square, Moscow, Russia


 

His accent was heavier than I’d expected, voice gravelly from endless Asmoloff cigarettes, the buzzing line making him sound distant. ‘Meet me at the cathedral.’

I crossed the glittering Moskva towards the Kremlin hunched on the other bank – a red brick play fort on a grand scale. Broken down Ladas and Volgas zipped like grounded wasps along the bridge, the occasional Mercedes and Bentley, windows blacked out.

The biting cold made me feel my foreignness most – how my movements stiffened, my cheeks turned to drum skins – while the locals negotiated the ice slicked streets with quiet doggedness.

Standing in the cathedral’s shadow, I craned to see the onion domes, let the golds and reds, the zigzags and swirls warm me, distract me from my jangling nerves.

A hand gripped my elbow. Jutting eyebrows, a jaw to match. That familiar, guarded look in the coal grey eyes.

‘Hi Dad,’ I said.

 


Written for What pegman saw, a writing prompt based on Google Streetview. This week, a stunning shot of St Basil’s Cathedral in Moscow … and a hint of Cold War mystery. See here to join in and to read the other stories.

 

 

 

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26 thoughts on “What pegman saw : In the shadow of St Basil’s

    1. Thanks Iain. Yes, I think Dad might be a remnant of the Cold War, abandoned in the field and gone rogue – what do you think? The street view was fantastic – the buildings, the space. Moscow looks like an amazing city

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      1. Maybe a double agent who had to flee to Moscow during the Cold War like Philby et al.? Would love to visit Russia, a fascinating country – not sure what the travel advice is at the moment though.

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      2. Yes, one of Philby’s lot, or someone undercover who was sucked into staying by a woman – it’s always a woman that spoils things! Russia does look amazing – but I don’t think it’s on my list of countries to visit soon 🙂

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    1. Good question James and a valid one. I think they met when she was tiny but not since, so it may as well be the first time. They really don’t know each other, that’s for sure. And for some reason, I think she’s more keen to kindle a relationship than he is …

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    1. Thank you Rochelle. I think perhaps he’s a remnant of the Cold War, too entrenched in Russian life to return to the West – and perhaps less keen than his daughter to renew connections. Thank you for the kind comment 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, thanks so much Alicia. Glad the bluff worked … Or was it a bluff? I imagine Dad to be an ex spy, a left over from the Cold War. Maybe he was dark secrets to tell 🙂

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