Russian Gothic Architecture
I visited St. Petersburg, Russia in 2001 shortly after 9-11 happened. I was boarding my plane when the first tower has hit. When air restrictions lifted, I left with a heavy heart yet thankful for a distraction. Nothing says adventure like traveling alone half way around the globe not knowing the language.
I didn’t know what to expect except cathedrals, ballet and art museums. St. Petersburg is so much more. People knew I was American since most women don’t travel alone. Russians and people from several countries came up to say how sorry they were about the tragedy in America. I cried knowing someone a world away cared. We can live in a bubble sometimes.
The Russian people tried so hard to help me when asking for directions even thou we didn’t speak each other’s language. I walked everywhere even at night with little worry of crime. Restaurant owners would watch for me knowing I was a women walking alone. The food was outstanding, caviar superb and service was excellent. I felt like a princess, the gypsy music never sounded better.
I stayed at The Astoria Hotel, one of the two five-star hotels in St. Petersburg. They had me at hello! From the Mercedes at the airport, to the tour of the hotel, fresh flowers, chilled champagne with hand written welcome note. The doorman knew my name when I arrived. I had a personal taste test of the different types of caviar.
A little intimidating for a hometown Texas girl. I hit the tourist spots and didn’t see half of my list. St. Petersburg is beautiful with a long interesting history. The Russian people were warm and hold a special place in my heart. I can’t wait to go back.