Vlada and Pete’s Spring BBQ

John Harrison

It was great to get out from a long winter’s worth of computer-screen-gazing and venture out to the Deep South for a BBQ. Following Pete’s detailed map, I surfaced out of Alma-Atinskaya Metro, to behold a different Moscow from the one I am familiar with. Here is a wide open square with large buildings, it has something in common with its part namesake, Alma Ata.

It was not difficult to find the BBQ; smoke was rising above the trees from the low lying ground leading down to the river. The park was populated with runners, sporting Nike shoes, with some even flashing iwatches to count their flying steps. Mums walked their children, teenagers chased each other. People were just hanging out. How very chic Moscow has become! Comparisons with home ended when I saw the BBQ venue. Red hot coals were being fanned to life by Pete and various assistants. Exquisite, succulent pieces of meat were in their final stages of roasting. This was enough to make any vegetarian (me) turn in my grave of Miso soup. Our hunger, whetted by the enticing smell was temporarily abated by grilled English bangers. Vegetarianism (temporarily) abandoned, I could only exclaim: What joy! If such an event were to held in a park in the UK or for that most most of western Europe, the relevant special forces would no doubt arrive before a match had even been put to kindling wood, to protect the public from a fire hazard, not to mention disturbing the public peace. After all, we need to be protected from ourselves, er, don’t we?

There was Bobbly, Mike, Inna, Ed, Joel, Pete, Patrick, Dan, David, Niel and Olga, and a lot of people who I hadn’t seen or spoken to for many many months. Living in this city, this sort of communication is essential. Vlada and Pete’s well thought out event was a great success. Can’t wait for the next one.

Thank you!