Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Привет зимой?

I think Russia's autumn has ended.

While my host mom and I walked to the post office this afternoon to mail my dad's birthday card, I swore I saw snow flurries.  Not many, but a few.  My host mom didn't believe me, though.

Later, I went to the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts to see the building that we did not tour on our previous excursion.  What an incredible collection!

According to my guidebook, the Pushkin Museum has amassed over 500,000 pieces since its inauguration in 1912.  Initially, it was an educational institution, filled with plaster casts of sculptural masterpieces and a collection of Egyptian relics.  The Soviet government's policy of nationalizing private property brought many other pieces to the museum.

Some impressive pieces included:
One of the Fayoum Portraits

Virgin and Child
El Greco's St. John the Baptist
The Troy Treasures

Though it was only 6:15 when I left the Pushkin Museum, another maroon night had already fallen over Moscow.  I asked around and found out that in 2011, the Russian government decided not to observe daylight savings time.  According to President Medvedev, "Every fall and every spring we are swearing at this system.  Our biorhythms are damaged.  We are all angry.  We either oversleep and turn up late for work or wake up too early and don't know what to do with this free time.  Let alone poor cows and other animals can't understand why they should have their meals or be milked earlier or later." (source).  Maintaining a GMT +4 hours year-round means mid-winter sunrise in Moscow will occur at 10:00AM.  Seriously?  I think the government should focus less on bovine happiness and more on the negative effects of smoking cigarettes.         

1 comment:

  1. What?! I had no idea that they're no longer observing daylight savings! 10am sunrises sound miserable, especially in the dead of winter. I'm with you on this one - the government missed a step here. Cows shouldn't be involved in a decision such as this one...