Goodbye St Pete!

Amol Gokhale
Wednesday, 11 July 2018

The spaceship-shaped gigantic St Petersburg Stadium, otherwise known as Zenit Arena, has its own aura and history

I don’t recall when I started writing letters in school, but with all four languages that I know, I don’t think I’ve written even 50 letters in my last 15 years of learning. And imagine, I sent out that many postcards (52 to be precise!) in a single day on Tuesday, which was the last day of my stay in St Petersburg. 

But do I regret spending the entire day either in my room or at the cafe downstairs, writing away rather than being out exploring this cultural capital of Russia? Absolutely not.

It was only yesterday that I learnt that the name of the cafe I have referred to here on a few occasions is as simple as ‘MeatCheese’. As I bid adieu to its ever helpful staff and the Moscow city, my new friends Svetlana, Veronika and Evgenia offered me a morning coffee. It really feels good when you can connect with someone on a personal level apart from the professional relation you share with them.

Coming back to postcards, even the lady in the post office was surprised to see the big bunch of postcards I was carrying and offered to help me in completing the formality of sticking stamps. She must’ve realised it would take me a lot of time to paste 104 stamps all by myself.

The spaceship-shaped gigantic St Petersburg Stadium, otherwise known as Zenit Arena, has its own aura and history. The project of the stadium on the Gulf of Finland was completed eight years after it was scheduled and the cost had gone up by over 500 per cent, nonetheless, it’s a jewel in the crown of St Petersburg.

There is no way you can take pictures of either the stadium or the highway bridge adjacent to it without at least a dozen structures popping in your frame, but you cannot stop yourself from clicking, especially if the structure is bathing in different shades of light.

I feel that I could have seen more of St Pete, but just couldn’t. No regrets, I am starting my own countdown till I fly back home.

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