I'll write whatever I want, dammit


Most of you won’t care one bit about this, and probably wonder what the fuss is all about, but I know at least a couple of you will be interested - and probably a bit jealous. Sorry.

This is SO cool!
What you see here is a premium ticket for tomorrow night’s Premier League match between my F.K. Luch-Energia Vladivostok (one of the worst teams in the league) and the hated Rubin Kazan (first place in the league, and one of the best teams in the world right now). The match will be played at venerable Dinamo Vladivostok Stadium:
The stadium is conveniently located right down the hill from my hotel:
Normally, these games are played in the afternoon, but this one is at 7, because it is the nationally televised game of the week (!) and it needs to be on at noon in Moscow (that’s 4 am in your neck of the woods).

Even though Luch-Energia is not that great a team, they are 2-1-2 in the last 5 games against Rubin. The place only seats 10,500 and the match is now officially sold-out.

I’ll be there wearing my team’s colors:


I wasn’t going to bring this up, but I developed a somewhat severe ear infection in Moscow about 10 days ago. I went to see a doctor and she gave me some antibiotics and ear drops. It seemed to be getting better until the plane ride to here, I guess the air pressure changes had something to do with it. Well, the last three days were pretty bad. I was staggering around running into things, hurting like hell, and deaf. Even worse, the ear drops smell like vodka, so I appeared drunk. My work kind of suffered from it, but I’m proud to say that I made it all three days. My workout regimen kind of took a hit, though. Today I am markedly better, and I finally got out for a walk after work. It was sunny and warm.

I’m staying at the Hotel Hyundai, and I have a pretty nice view of the harbor and the mountains on the other side:
Yesterday the fog never let up:
It is really hilly here, “going up the street” takes on a whole new meaning:
There is a street that leads down to the (small, but nice) beach:
The water is a lot warmer than I expected. Maybe I’ll go swimming once I have recovered (except it is supposed to be cooler this weekend).
Here’s a Babushka diligently making sure that nobody pees for free (and you think YOUR job sucks):
I like this place. It’s got kind of a rustic grunge harbor city kind of thing going on, a slightly dangerous, living on the edge kind of attitude - sort of like Baltimore. The people are generally nicer than in Moscow (and a lot less European), the women are even more beautiful, and there seems to be a bit more financial equality. They could turn this into a real tourist town, but that would kind of ruin the whole experience - sort of like Baltimore.
That’s all I got for now, but the weekend is coming up...

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