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CHIMO Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-10-06 07:15 PM
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Global Eye
WATERTOWN, Tennessee -- Our revels now are ended. This is my last column for The Moscow Times.

It seems somehow appropriate, if entirely accidental, that I should be writing it here, in the small town in rural Tennessee where I grew up -- indeed, in the same room where almost 40 years ago I first heard mysterious snatches of Radio Moscow filtering through the static on my shortwave radio, and where I spent so many hours reading and rereading Solzhenitsyn: my first exposure to Russian literature, and to a deeper Russian culture behind the chest-beating blather of state propaganda.

It was these "echoes from the future," to borrow Pasternak's line, that set me on a path that would one day lead to the great city itself. I first saw it swathed in winter gray, in the dying days of the Brezhnev regime, then many years later returned to Moscow in the bright, choking heat of midsummer, at the high-water mark of the Yeltsin era. I came to the city as a supplicant: destitute, no job in hand, no home to go back to -- a last, wild throw of the dice.

The dogs bark, the caravan moves on; such is life. Yet as Lincoln once said, in a wildly dissimilar context, I am loath to close. My final word here severs my last real link to the city I've loved above all others. The echoes from the future that I first heard in this room will now be a whisper from the past. Yet to have known Moscow, to have called it home, even for a season, is surely privilege enough for anyone. Why ask for more? Let the circle come to a close, here where it began. Do svidaniya.
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gula Donating Member (619 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-10-06 07:35 PM
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1. One of my favourites. I hope he keeps his clear eye on
US shenanigans now that he lives back there.
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