I know there are worse posts, of course. We'll be living in a modern city with many conveniences that families at some posts can't even dream of. We'll have a nice apartment (hopefully with an extra bedroom or two!) and a car to take us to a Target-esque store, from what I've read. I haven't found any information about English-speaking preschools, so most likely I'll be spending a lot of time with Jack, but we will probably be able to afford at least part-time help. The Internet is fast, apparently. They have Zara and Mango (hurrah!) and movie theaters (although one site said all the English movies are dubbed in Russian; I'm praying that's not true). If anyone out there has been to Yekat or is there now, please give me some good news in the comments! I'm having no problem dwelling on the negatives at the moment, as you can see, so you can kindly leave that out.
On the bright side, however, there are a few family-friendly sites, including a water park (can't imagine I'll ever be warm enough there to go to a water park, but maybe I'll acclimate) and an amusement park. And then, of course, there is the Yekaterinburg zoo. Whether or not the zoo is actually worth visiting remains to be seen. However, their website is certainly worth a visit. Thanks to my mom for finding this particular gem. And here are a few enticing points you might want to keep in mind when you're deciding if you'd like to visit us in Russia next year; they just might help sway you in our direction:
"It is so pleasant indeed to go to the Zoo when the Sun is shining and the day is bright. We are not going to discuss animal numbers and variety that you can see there. Zoo was not meant for statistics fans. One should go there for positive emotions that you get from communicating, exactly communicating with animals. Amicable raccoon is always happy to make a pause in his household activities and laundering, and come up to shake your hand."
|This just looks like a bad idea...|
"The elephant, despite its 'diminutiveness' has evidently always been thinking to be a ballerina. That is why it is non stop singing something to itself and dancing. It’s amusing to see it, as if it is listening to a walkman and moving according the rhythm of that music all the time."
"We recognize ourselves in animals, there is no point to confirm or disprove Darwin’s theory. There are things speaking for themselves. So many characters so many ways of life… diversity surprises and makes us smile sometimes."
So many characters, so many ways of life... Not just true of the zoo. And hey, at least the raccoons seem friendly.