Из письма другу:
(сорри, что по-английски: друг-то - англичанин. Может, когда руки дойдут изложить на великом и могучем...)
...The camp was absolutely MARVELOUS!!!!!!! I can't wait to go again next weekend. And it's STILL Monday - as it was 2 hours ago too... :-)
...Monday morning (today? can't belive it was TODAY!) I got up at 6am and first thing woke Lena, as she was to take me back to the station on the motor boat. The bus to Moscow goes at 7am. That was a fantastic morning! Fog above the reservoir, dew on the grass, silence - the whole camp was asleep - and sun shining in the bright blue sky. Wish I could take a photo at THAT time, but 1) no time; 2) anyway - no battery in the cam. The battery had died Sun afternoon yet and, as I said, no power source there to recharge.... But I managed LOTS of pix on Sat - many look great. The campfire, the views around, people, children, water plants, butterflies (close - they are easy to take a pic of, do not fear of people at all; one was eating sweet kompot someone had spilt on the table at dinner!!), whortleberries (we went to the forest and came back with 3 bowls full of whortleberries - fun to pick them!), pines etc. etc.
I enjoyed sleeping in the tent, in my sleeping bag! Tents are cosy - I had never seen one close enough, I thought they were only fit to sleep in them, but it's easy to change or pack or just sit and chat in a tent too. Lena's tent is big enough to even stand full height in it! Actually no wonder I slept like a log there (asleep the next sec after pulling up the bag's zipper! Even didn't hear two other girls coming and falling asleep next to me!) - it's fresh air all day and night, activities and fun (in KM colleagues said I looked fresh and bright after just 2 days there!).
...AND there was a campfire each night! Nearly all night long - people went to 'bed' at the crack of dawn.
...On Sun I was a person on duty, had to cook breakfast (oatmeal porridge) for a company of 30 hungry people!! Lena had taught me beforehand how to do that better and I had a guy to help me with things like carrying big pans and washing-up in the reservoir. I was bit nervous - well, I usually eat musli for breakfast, I used to cook oatmeal porridge but long ago and I was worried people might refuse to eat it, might say "it's tasteless" or so. The guy who was on duty with me said: 'There are two kinds of food when hiking or camping: 1) they eat it; and 2) they eat it ANYWAY'! In her turn Lena said: 'What is hot - already isn't raw'. Well, both reassured me. The breakfast went OK - that was nice to hear people clattering their spoons against the bowls eating quickly and saying 'thanks, great breakfast' afterwards. The only prob for me was - I couldn't count them properly without knowing many people close enough yet! Who had their 'kasha', who - not yet??...
Saturday night we celebrated Lena's husband's birthday. (Must add here - the company was great, easy-going and interesting people - after just a few hours together I felt I was WITH them, a part of them...). We had barbeque, lots of meat, but too little wine (or it was because too many people liked it - will bring them wine next time), fruits. All in open air...
After barbeque everyone gathered around the fire, 2 or 3 guys played guitar (some songs I knew, some - didn't), and we sang with them, another guy kept adding logs in the fire to keep it alive and hot for us... I stayed until there were only 4 people (there were initially about 20-25) and I couldn't keep my eyes open any more. And those who stayed soon met a guy from a neighbouring camp, chatted him and went to sleep at 7-ish in the morning! No wonder I couldn't make them get up the next day for breakfast at 11am! Some ate their kasha and happily hit the sleeping sacks again... :-)
...And some went water skiing. I didn't, just watched the others and took photos. And strangely Lena didn't make me to try as she had promised when still here. Think, I'll try the next w/end - should be fun after all - everyone says so! I preferred table tennis, whortleberries and 'backgammon' (do u know the game? I found the word for it in the dictionary...) on a rug on the grass.
Children are very happy there! Keep running here and there, always active, playing, screaming, laughing and are v.friendly to strangers like me in the first hours there. Lena's 8-year old Sasha surprised me by his level of knowledge and manner of speech - certainly not for a 2nd form school-child. We watched a spider hiding at the top of a tent, took photos of beautiful clouds above the water (his idea!). Her other kid Masha, 5, had fun doing my hair (Lena herself doesn't like it, so I offered Masha to try with me...). There's a couple of pix of the process and result! ;-))
...Looks like my email is turned upside down: I began with Mon morning (going home) and NOW I'm about to tell you how I arrived! Well, it took me too long to finish the day's tasks on Fri - every Fri like that actually. So, I was late for 7pm bus to Konakovo and was nervous as the trip normally takes 2.5 hours. There was another bus at 8pm arriving at Konakovo at 10.30pm. And it wasn't the end of the trip yet. I had to take another, local, bus to the Ribhoz (fish_processing plant), where Lena was to meet me and take me to the camp on their motor boat. Good plan, but... After two huge traffic blockages the bus actually arrived at 11.20pm (!). I was alone on it - all people had got off earlier. Dark. Night. No local buses at that time, of course. When I was still in the bus long way from Konakovo, Lena sms-ed that I'd better take a taxi to the Ribhoz. So I did, sharing the taxi with 2 guys and a girl who had just got off the train. We were going same direction, but different places, so the driver took them first, then he took me. I was scared a little - alone in the car, forest at both sides of the road and the dark... But the driver appeared a good guy. I told him the whole story about my work, the camp, the invitation, the long trip and that it was my first ever time camping... The driver was puzzled about WHERE to take me actually (the only thing I knew was 'I need SOME Ribhoz') until I said Lena was going to take me on a motor boat. At moment he guessed where! In 20 min we were at the jetty and could hear the sound of a motor boat approaching it. The driver signalled with the headlights and I saw the boat was RED. Ura! It was Lena!!... So happy to see her at last - familiar voice in the dark! The driver helped me aboard (saying to Lena: 'Here's your treasure - safe and happy!' :-))). Then there was a great 'flight' in the dark, in the middle of broad reservoir, with splashes and wind to our faces... And safe arrival to the camp where no-one was asleep but chatting around the campfire. I had a glass of mulled wine, sat at the fire with Lena and other people (whose faces I couldn't see properly - they said we'd meet each other again next morning)......Great weekened, innit? ;-)) I wished I could phone Sveta to say 'I'm staying for a week'...