Thursday, December 31, 2009

Map of Moscow

PC and I are in Moscow. We're standing in a long upstairs gallery in a museum and can look out of the windows across the city and all its profusion of 18th-century marble monuments and buildings. We consult a small tourist map. We are only staying in Moscow for one day and two nights, so have little time to see all the things we want to see, and I especially don't want to miss Red Square. The map shows a wide boulevard running along the straight bottom edge of a huge semi-circular lake called Napoleon's Semi-Circle. Red Square is shown on the map to the south-east of the lake. It is surprisingly small (and marked as a solid red square on the otherwise black and white map). I think the map must be wrong. We hurry down the boulevard past the lake and look down towards what should be Red Square, according to the map. I'm still sceptical and ask PC whether he can see any onion domes. He says he can't. Well that's definitely not Red Square then, I say.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm walking, in the afternoon, in a city I somehow know is Helsinki and Stockholm merged together. There are Stockholmish characters, like inhabited islands readily accessible by bridges, but the place has retained more of the Helsinki atmosphere, with an addition of heavy industry and metropolis.
I'm going somewhere, but as I don't really know how to get there, I ask a municipal worker wearing a blue boiler suit. The worker explains I should head for a point inbetween the two bridges leading to the island to the southeast and southwest, respectively. The southwestern island he calls by a name (Furuholmen?) I know isn't right. While protesting – the island is called Bäckholmen, I went there last week – I reflect on the inappropriate name (roughly meaning Brook Islet). Apart from the island now being covered with buildings and macadam, it could hardly ever have produced a decent brook.
The worker, being responsible for road network maintenance, should know how to orientate here, and I'm not a native to the merged city. Nevertheless, I believe he must be mistaken, and decide not to follow the given directions.

There seems to be a similarity between the municipal worker in the merged city and the tourist map in the Moscow dream. Both should be authorities but, apparently, are unreliable.
/ IÖ