During these seven years, while I have been working as a courier in Moscow, the city has changed a lot. Streets and buildings have been renovated and I’m very impressed with it. Now we have this brand-new business district Moscow-city and in 2018 we will have the most beautiful park in the new district of Zaryadye just next to Red Square. So Moscow is really developing for the better.
Victory Park is a majestic and very emotional place for me. All my family members died in the Great Patriotic War and this place gives me goose bumps.
What is your favorite transport in Moscow?
It’s definitely our metro. Unlike in other countries, where metro is just a means of transport, in Moscow it’s an architectural monument. You can see as tourists are taking pictures there. I like the oldest stations the best, like metro Ploshchad Revolyutsii with its impressive bronze sculptures.
I don’t like Moscow because of this kind of weather, or winter at all. I love Thailand.
Not so far from metro Tretyakovskaya on Bolotnaya Square there’s a really interesting sculpture called “Children Are the Victims of Adult Vices”. It consists of 12 different sculptures that represent different vices. It forces you to think and I like it.
What is the most unique thing in Moscow?
It must be buckwheat, because I haven’t found it in any other place. But I don’t love it.
The energy of Moscow is huge. The city is like a big machine that may be a bit rusty but can achieve impressive results. We can see this in all the historical layers of Moscow’s cityscape. I mean architecture forms like constructivism, the Stalinist architecture, the Soviet architecture, the architecture during Mayor Yuri Luzhkov and now the regeneration of urban spaces.
My favorite place in Moscow is VDNkH. There, one can feel the power of Russian history, the sacrifices of the Russian people, and the immensity of the area. I’ve found its mix of architecture, ideology, nature, leisure and public space very fascinating.
How do you see the current urban planning in Moscow?
I appreciate the new urban spaces which have improved the cityscape. Many of the old streets have been reconstructed. The sidewalks have been widened and it makes the buildings emerge in a new way. This kind of new architectural route can be seen, for example, in Patriarch Ponds. On the other hand, lately I have begun to miss the old, more chaotic Moscow.
When I return to Moscow after traveling, I feel relieved. For me it’s a sympathetic city.
I believe that the heart of Moscow is the Red Square. It has an entire panoramic view of the city: Saint Basil’s Cathedral, the Kremlin, GUM Trading House, and the State Historical Museum. Without any of these buildings it wouldn’t be the same.
There’s an ice skating rink now on Red Square, but like any other native Muscovite, I prefer to leave that for the tourists. Instead, I would go skate near my home, where it’s quieter.
What is the biggest problem in Moscow nowadays?
From the year 2000 on, it has been the traffic jams. Another one is the big number of immigrants. In that case I must say that I’m not very tolerant.
I have a two-fold attitude to Moscow. Because it is so lively and dynamic you can never feel bored here. On the other hand the density of population makes you feel a little bit scared. For example, during rush hour in the metro you are surrounded by people at a distance of half of millimeter. That’s awful!
I liked Gorky park a lot, right after the reconstruction. Now it’s too crowed. It’s hard to find a relaxed place in Moscow. You can’t sit down on a bench and take it easy, because all the benches are already occupied.
How do you spend your free time in Moscow?
I tend to spend my free time actively. Among other things I like meeting my friends and going together to the cinema. We go to October Cinema on New Arbat Avenue or Cinema Rolan in the district of Clean Ponds, where it is beautiful to take a walk after the film.
I really like Moscow and the feeling of freedom here. It’s like home to me.
On Red Square you can meet tourists from France and all over the world. People come to Russia just to see this square. It’s like an advertisement for Russia.
How do you feel about the winter in Moscow?
I have to say I prefer autumn over winter, but there’s something special about winter also. I was born in Congo, and I saw snow for the first time when I came here.
I’m a native Muscovite. If I could choose any other place to be my home city, it would still be Moscow. I love old Moscow and its narrow streets. Also the history of Moscow is fascinating.
I enjoy walking in the district near Pokrovka street, which is actually the street where I was born on. Every time when I return there, my soul feels calm.
Which museums would you recommend in Moscow?
Recently I visited the Multimedia Art Museum near metro Kropotinskaya . There was an interesting exhibition of works by contemporary artist Pavel Pepperstein. I also saw some old photographs of celebrities from the 1930s. Altogether there’s seven floors of things to see.
I have ambivalent feelings about Moscow. When I’m in a hurry and stuck in traffic jams, I get tired of it. But when I leave Moscow, I immediately begin to long for it. Moscow is like a drug.
In the morning it’s wonderful to walk the little streets of Arbat district and smell the fresh bakery and coffee. I don’t mean Arbat Street, because it’s too fancy and full of tourists. Nearby there’s also the beautiful district of Patriarch Ponds. This is the setting for the famous novel of The Master and Margarita, which was written by Mikhail Bulgakov. You can still feel the same atmosphere there .
How are the Muscovites?
They are always busy and always hurrying somewhere. Lately people have become more friendly and helpful. Also the city is changing for the better. It’s getting more international, which can be seen for example in the business center Moscow-city. Now I’m proud to invite people to Moscow.
I like the rhythm of Moscow, the speed of it. I was born here and I genuinely love Moscow.
In my opinion everyone should visit the State Tretyakov Gallery. It’s not just a piece of cultural history, but a whole collection of international masterpieces. I truly recommend this beautiful museum.
How is the student life in Moscow?
I study in Plekhanov Russian University of Economics, and I must say that I’m satisfied with the student life here. We have many activities and events and also some privileges, for example a dormitory in the center of city and free access to the gym.