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trip to russia 2019

Last night I was laying in bed scrolling through my old pictures. After months of confinement, it got me thinking how have I been spending my life.

I was disappointed with the calm of last year, but also impressed with the highs of it. I didn’t do as much as I wanted, but the stuff I did do, well, was amazing at least:)

One of my favorite memories was my trip to russia. For years I wanted to do extreme-cold weather hiking and to see the northern lights. At last it came true and, with the support of twitter, i took lots of photos.

I don’t tweet anymore, but I would love to share these photos somewhere and I hope they inspire you to do whatever you want.

Wanna see?

I left near Western christmas (few days shy of 25 december). So the trains were PACKED and there was a wait to board them, shoving crowds, and a queue system with guard they set up. Sorry — this is the train to the airport. It’s crowded because everyone’s leaving paris.
at last ๐Ÿ˜€
AirBaltic was AMAZING, the service and food was super, I recommend the caviar and vodka dinner
Stop in Riga, nice airport
next stop, st petersbourg
just left the airport feeling :DDDDDDDD
I took a short tour of the city
that’s me btw
really a beautiful city
i remember thinking about how deep the metros were and wondering like, what’s the point, when you have to wait like 10 minutes just to reach the bottom of the esclator. But at least the trains were very clean, fast, and on time unlike paris. There were no africans nor homeless on them. Just clean normal white people and everyone is polite
MY BABY for the next week
Needed a few more supplies for the hike, stuff I didn’t want to take on the flight, so I swung by a mall first and bought all my extreme weather gear here
and now… it begins. A 24 hour drive to the arctic circle
my first night at a hotel, in some tinyyyy random village. It was a family-run hotel and nobody spoke english. Staff was very nice and it was comfy
my view from the balcony
walked around the village a little bit before carrying on
ussr monuments
i was taken by the street art, very modern and clever, not what i’d expect in a place like this
“main street”, this is pretty much it
ok let’s keep driving
stopped at another town, needed a break
Would drive several hours, and stop for breaks, just kick back and play on my phone, listen to music on the stereo or think. Really a peaceful time, nowhere to be, no hurry, just relax and pleasure and new sights
this number (the temperature) steadily dropped with each passing hours that I drove north ๐Ÿ˜‰
ok second hotel, amazing city, I don’t know how to spell it in english but it’s “petrozavondsk” or something like that. Went out that night, had a lot of fun
also ice skated while i was here. wouldn’t be a trip to russia without it
view from my hotel room
Slept in real late, ate, and took a walk through a nearby park before moving on
ok let’s go;)
saw a lot of this
stray dogs at every gas station, not sure why or what the deal was
not sure where i saw this. might have downloaded from 4chan
my baby
a hot dog and a cold dog
Out in the distance, that’s a russian military base. lots of soldiers around
my location. Can you say high? (I’m the blue dot)
found this on 4chan. timing was good
an arctic fisherman showed off one of his catches to me (i fuckin hate crabs though, he caught me offguard with this thing)
ok slept at a hotel, last night before the hike…. lets go!
This was on my last stretch, only a few more hours of driving left. Less than 25 thousand people on earth are more “north” than I am right now.
also yes the hat is authentic=) it’s called a ushanka
we’re here!!!!!!!!
arctic ocean, my first view ever
tiny village, like, wow. Who would want to live here? You know I say that, but they were building new and modern apartment buildings, as of hundreds of people were ready to move in. Everyone here was russian but I was surprised to find a very small chinese minority.
at the edge of the world
and so I begin my hike. Very quickly, and in the darkness, I approached a sudden drop, a cliff. I was about to walk and slide right off this thing. It made me realize I need to be extremely careful out here, there are no second chances. At this temperature, if I stop walking, hypothermia sets in very quickly, no matter how good my gear is. Nobody could hear me scream and no cell phone signal. So I took out my headphones and stoped listening to music, and just used all my senses and too caution. In total, I hiked for 24 hours.
But anyway let’s move on. These are the stars. I think a lot more were visible, but my camera didn’t catch them
I’m guessing some madman with a sense of humor places this out here, in the middle of nowhere, a mirror, matryoshka dolls, and a small christmas tree. Kinda freaked me out not gonna lie, was scared to look in that mirror
woof. or howl? ๐Ÿค”
at last, the northern lights. I stopped and stared at them for hours. So tired from hiking with all this gear, i just layed here as long as i could (until the cold got to me). this was an incredible experience
let me tell you a scary story
you know, somehow, finding my way back was easier than expected
got a little bit of sunlight, a few hours. In the distance, you see the arctic ocean.
so much fun; i had a great time here
really
liek wow
my mask is totally frozen from the moisture in my breath, it turned from fabric, to a sharp solid. my feet are numb in my extreme-weather boots, and you can see my face ๐Ÿ˜€ Legs tired too and maybe hiked 20 hours thus far. It’s time for a nap, but there is NO sleeping here
Snowmobile tracks and radio towers in the distance, I’m getting closer to the village
Just off the road, saw these cool boats in ruins
ok you have no idea how happy i was to eat this. it may look like ordinary sushi, but for me right then, it was perfect
already drove 5 hours or so? 15 more to go, heading back to st petersbourg
remember the temperature when we started this road trip? Look at it NOW hahaha
such a relaxing experience, really had a great time, i needed this
yo
christmas decor is up, cities are getting ready. In russia, christmas is not until 5th of January (unlike Western nations who usually celebrate on 25 december)
moscow
forgive me i was tired, sad because I just got news that someone near to me had died, but I still wanted to take this hike. But if you see the mixed expression in my face, that’s why. Also a good contrast, remember that you will one day die and then choose to LIVE
moscow was absolutely stunning, absolutely. They went-all out with christmas celebrations unlike anywhere i have ever seen. Totally worth a visit during this time of year. I regret not taking more photos
Spend the last 3 days mostly keeping to myself, kinda bummed out, also tired, so I stayed in the hotel and ordered lots of delivery
hehe
but it didn’t stop me from going out and meeting my friends. We hung out, got burgers from an american restaurant (thanks guys lol). And walked around the city
victory square
eternal fire
ussr cannon
and voila !
You wouldn’t believe how cheap the cigs are here. Seriously. One pack for less than a BUCK
Arrived in Sweden, first order, challenge a random Swedish geezer to a game of chess. (he won)
hello stockholm my old home i missed you so much holy shit it’s good to be back i loev sverige omg omg omg
so many memories here
stockholm, this was all on new years eve
gamla stan (old town), I’ve been meaning to buy something special here for a year but hadn’t been back to get it until now. good shopping, i mean for swedish standards, they aren’t huge shoppers
i might live here if i ever do return to sweden. no cars, narrow alleys, mordern shops, lots of history, plus it’s always busy like this
this is the site of the muslim terrorist attack that killed many people and one little girl named ebba รฅkerlund. it never got enough coverage by the media so i always make a point to share it. The swedish media back then was so scared of revealing the true nature of the attack, they tried to repress the details as to not offend any muslims living here. But the result was this girls story being nearly forgotten until an internet mob freaked out and independent journalists took matters into their own hands. Nowadays things are different. But to me it’s strange to not even see a memorial or anything here, when this is the worst thing to ever happen to this otherwise incredibly peaceful country.
cool lights
this city is brilliantly planned, highly livable
and you can NEVER stop by sweden without stopping by maxx.
Flight was at 4am so i chose to sleep and miss the fireworks, i don’t mind, i felt refreshed and ready to return home to paris
depart
arrive
lol all the metros are closed. This was due to a union strike, which lasted for months, leading up to the coronavirus, which also closed the city down for months. France has been out of work for 6 months lol
homeeeeeeeee, well almost, 10 minutes walk from here
k now i’m home
my cat missed me

That’s it guys

I hope to do a lot more like this one. I hope you liked it.

this trip didn’t cost much at all. nothing is stopping you from your dreams… so go out and make your own memories!!