My second week was a short one concerning uni, as there were public holidays on the Thursday and Friday: so no class! A friend and I decided to go to Pushkin for a day, i.e. Tsarskoye Selo (tsar village). Shamefully, we spent the first 3 hours there in the most insane pizza restaurant (Fortunato), definitely the best I’d ever had in Russia, and actually a competitor for the best I’ve ever had, full-stop! After that gluttony, we ventured out into the snowy forest. A short way in is the magical Catherine’s Palace. We wandered through the glorious guilded ballrooms and colourful salons in a daze. Then we braved the cold to see more of the gardens. Through more trees was Alexander’s Palace, which we could only see from the outside, but I think it was one of my favourite scenes yet. The snow just got heavier and heavier as we made our way round to the last palace the Romanov family had been in before they were transported to Siberia (their final journey). This palace was bordered by metal as it was undergoing its first renovations since the Nazi invasion.
Overall it was a really magical trip, as the photos may tell! The rest of the holiday involved more vodka, which I have told myself I’m going to quit already (I can’t take being hungover), and general wandering about aimlessly in amazement. Sunday morning was gloriously sunny, and showed the city (in my opinion) at its best. But then again, sunrise is my biggest weakness!