Russia

Russia Part II, aka we finally made it to Mongolia (August 21-23, 2011)

Russia Part II, aka we finally made it to Mongolia (August 21-23, 2011)

Although it seems like it should be possible, there is no way to cross directly from Eastern Kazakhstan to Western Mongolia.  A 1200 km drive through Siberian Russia is required.  With our double-entry Russian visas close to expiration, we forged ahead toward Mongolia. View Semey to Mongolia in a larger map We found ourselves rejoicing […]


New record label from a Russian town we passed through

We have fond memories of getting completely lost trying to navigate our way through the southern Russian city of Krasnodar after we crossed over from the Crimea and plodded along toward western Kazakhstan. Definitely one of our navigational FAIL moments, we probably lost 2 hours trying to figure out how to get back to the […]


Astrakhan, the Gateway to Kazakhstan (August 4, 2011)

Astrakhan, the Gateway to Kazakhstan (August 4, 2011)

The morning was bright as we left Svetlograd. Our hopes were high as we anticipated reaching Astrakhan, on the Russian border, 330 miles away, by nightfall. The shrunken woman selling kvas outside of the hotel only bolstered our optimism. Kvas isn’t sold widely in the United States, and I’d found it underwhelming when I’d tried […]


Only Fools Russia In

Only Fools Russia In

Our Russia podcast pulls several more tracks from the goldmine of a Soviet collection we picked up in Odessa.  There were too many great tracks to fit into one podcast, so we split them between Ukraine and Russia.  Tracks 2, 7, and 14 are from a pair of discs we picked up in Elista, a […]


A night in stunning Svetlograd (August 3, 2011)

It had been a long day. After 7 hour wait for a ferry to cross into Russia the previous day, we were eager to make progress. We were happy with our short experience in Russia so far though: the customs people were incredibly friendly and helpful, immigration was “rent free” (just as a signed penned […]