This book is dedicated to my mother Eve who sadly left this mortal life a few years ago. She died in the right way in so much that she just closed her eyes and went to sleep, forever. But she left us far too early in her life and she had a lot to live for. She was much loved and is sorely missed.It is also dedicated to my father Alan, who gave me the encouragement to travel, and to my brother Martyn who throughout my life has been my best mate and provided brotherly support and advice whenever I needed it, which was and is often.Alan and Martyn joined me in Moscow in 1998 for the 850th Birthday Party of that great city. What a fabulous weekend that was and it was a great honour for me to act as their tour guide.
This is my first “published” writing and I am sad to say that I missed my self-imposed deadline which was to present the completed book to my father for him to read. Sadly he died of cancer before I had finished my scribbling. I have previously self-published this book in paperback and was pleased to make donation of £5 to Myton Hospice in Warwick, England, for every copy I sold which was a not spectacular but certainly a commendable number of 200 copies.
Any profits from the sale of this updated e-book will also go to Myton Hospice. The reason to choose Myton is a personal one. The staff looked after my father in his last months and they did so lovingly that I will never forget their kindness. They made a difficult time for our entire family a lot easier for us all with their compassion, care and understanding. They set a standard in being such good people that is so high, I fear I will never be able to match them. My ambition is to be just a decent human being.
One day I shall be taking my daughters Millicent, known as Millie, and Larissa, known as Lara, to experience Moscow and Russia. They can then see for themselves what the fuss I make is all about. They will not be disappointed.Lara is named after the actress Julie Christie or more exactly after the heroine played by Miss Christie in Dr Zhivargo, Larissa Feodorovna Guishar. Dr Zhivargo! My favourite film of all time or does that title belong to the Great Escape or Funeral in Berlin or High Fidelity or…? Millie should be grateful she is not named “Yaroslavna”, the heroine in the Opera “Prince Igor” by Borodin.
This book will I hope be read by Tom Veasey. I hope that he gains a little insight into what happened to me during our missing years.Last but not least, thanks to my beautiful and patient wife Sharon for the continuing supply of passes to enable me to visit my beloved Moscow and Russia.Forgive the spelling mistakes, the grammatical errors and the creative imagination. Hopefully you will enjoy reading, learn a little about Russia and pick up some useful Russian vocabulary. More than that, I hope it gives you the desire to visit because I know you will find the whole experience to be, not necessarily life changing, but certainly life enhancing.
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About the Author
Born in Meriden in Warwickshire, England, I now live in a village just outside Royal Leamington Spa in the same county. So on the face of it, I have moved barely 20 miles from birthplace to current place of residence. In reality I have traveled extensively throughout the world. I lived in Russia during the naughty nineties after the fall of the Soviet Empire and again at the turn of the century. Even though I live village life at the moment, I love the power and the buzz of cities like Moscow and my interest in Russia comes from these periods. I was assigned to work in Hong Kong during the transition to Chinese rule and have also spent time in the Middle East and the United States. As I draw my corporate life to an end, I am planning to travel more in the near future and have plans to teach English and Volunteer to gain more world knowledge.Maybe another shorty travelogue will be forthcoming. My favourite author is Robert Harris. Not surprisingly for those who knows his works, "Archangel" is my book of choice and Robert's use of English and his story telling captivates.I have a busy schedule and I struggle to find time to read other than in 30 minute spurts. So I read books that I can pick up and put down frequently and are a light read. As a youth I read Alistair MacLean and this genre has stayed with me. Other books to have captured my imagination include "As far as my feet will carry me" by J.M. Bauer, the epic tale of Clemens Forreli, a German Soldier, who escapes from a Soviet Labour camp in Eastern Siberia and travels 8,000 miles to freedom with his family in Germany. I love Rugby and Cricket and Racketball keeps me fit and listening to music and attending gigs keeps me sane. I'm English so I am programmed to love the Kinks and the Stones and Paul Weller and Coldplay and Muse etc.. But give me Motown and Ska and I'll be happy too. I ride a scooter so I guess I am an aging Mod! I will read about all of the above subjects. My language skills extend to German and Spanish but neither fluently and my Russian is now as rusty as a nuclear sub rotting away in Murmansk. I aim to ensure that all three languages are in good shape in the next 5 years or so.