Showing posts from December, 2013

We Wish You A Merry New Year!

Wow, what a year it has been!

Katya and I started the year off in Victoria, British Columbia and ended it in Guelph, Ontario. In that time we lived in Edmonton, Alberta for several months, drove 5,000 km across Canada, changed jobs, got thrown out on the street by a psychopath and started a new blog!

I always tie New Year's into Christmas in my mind, being part of the same season. However, the way the season is celebrated in Russia is much more logical despite being so much less traditional. In Russia in times past, the Bolsheviks deemed that Christmas was too steeped in religion to be celebrated by the masses. Because Lenin and his gang of Marxist thugs believed they knew what was best for everybody else, they banned Christmas.**

**Note: The Russian Orthodox Church uses the Julian calendar to mark the year, which is 15 days ahead of the Gregorian calendar used by everyone else. As such December 25 in the Julian calendar is January 7 in the the Gregorian. The Bolsheviks moved Russ…


Since I began living with Katya, I stopped buying into the whole "Ginger Rogers could do all the same moves that Fred Astaire did, but backwards and in high heels." Allow me to explain:
Katya is not the first woman I've lived with. I once lived with girl for nearly six years before that ended in flames, and I am experienced with the intricacies of cohabitation. Between breaking up with that girl and moving in with Katya I had the opportunity to live several wonderful years on my own. The habits I grew accustomed to in that time, and the fact that Katya is so much more domesticated and feminine then that North American girl I lived with before, has created a hitherto unexplored world of playing house. Because of this, I have made some remarkable discoveries.
For instance, I never knew that I needed a bedskirt. I'd heard of them, but always thought they were for real people with real homes. Apparently that's me, because now I'm the proud owner of not just one,…

Let It Goddamn Snow

Winter is finally upon us here in southern Ontario, and it has come in angry. Near the end of November we got our first good dusting of snow and I proudly declared the "..beginning of winter!" but then temperatures rose and rains came and it all washed away.

Now, two weeks into December, the main show is on and it has been snowing and blowing non-stop for the past four days.

For Katya and I it is rather nice. We had no winter in Victoria. No snow, not temperatures below 10 degrees centigrade nor was there much of a Christmas feel to the place. A couple of houses made a weak show of putting up lights but otherwise everyday was just the same as the day before, which is pretty much how it goes in Victoria.

Katya grew up in Moscow, famous for its war-winning winters, and I grew up in southern Ontario, land of hockey, snowmobiles and ice-fishing. We are both quite accustomed to heavy winters so found ourselves missing winter while in Victoria.

At the height of a brutal winter, u…

Katya Loves Walmart

Since arriving in North America, Katya has developed a love for, nay, an obsession with US super-chain Walmart. She will use any excuse to go in there and getting her back out in a timely fashion is damn-near impossible.

It all started a couple of weeks after Katya arrived in Victoria. It was winter and due to rough seas and deep federal cutbacks my job as a Fisheries Observer was non-existent. This meant I had to find savings from the budget and Walmart offers some of the best, particularly in their grocery department. I took Katya to the Victoria Walmart at the swanky "Uptown Centre" and I couldn't get her out again!

In Victoria the Walmart sprawls across two stories, with special escalators that grapple your shopping cart and bring it up to meet you on the second floor. Up there you can find the electronics, household, automotive, arts and crafts and furniture departments. Katya spent a good hour and half on the second floor before we even made it downstairs to the c…