Before I get to today’s special lunch with friends, below is a link to a post on blogspot showing the Sayano-Shusheskaya Dam that I visited last Thursday, the 20th of December. I hope you enjoy it.

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Alexzay lives just outside of Minusinsk, a sister city of Abakan.



Minusinsk or if you will МИНУСИНСК for the life of me I am having trouble with this name.

Alexzay invited five friends to lunch at his home. Mike and I were among this group of five. I can’t speak for any of you following along here with me BUT, when I am invited into the home of a friend here in Russian Siberia, it is very special.

Three photos taken from Alexzay’s front yard.

“Oh Captain! It looks like Russian Siberia!” .. “It IS!”

Into Alexzay’s warm and welcoming home we walked.

In our cabin in Manley Hot Springs, Alaska, we have an ‘out house’. My immediate question to Alexzay (because I really needed to go ) was, “Is your toilet outside?”

Well just look at this. Indoor plumbing.

Comfortable indeed! I’ve no idea of how he heats his home. It looks like a radiator under the window. IF it is, then he must have a hot water heating system. I’ll have to ask him.

His ‘in action’ kitchen.

Soup. Mashed potatoes and meat. More was to come including home baked bread.

“Mike? Oh Mike?” .. Mike was far away from us.

Alexander (above and below) is our host here in Abakan.

Our host Alexzay.

It was a wonderful, three-hour-or-so visit. When Mike and I got safely back to our flat, I lay down and slept for well over an hour.

The below issue is taking a toll on me. That’s probably why I needed a nap. As we were driving to Alexzay’s home, I was on the phone with Patti and Mike in turn was on the phone with the apartment complex.

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Just in case any of you think that each and every day of my life is without stress and drama, below we have ..

Just a little drama.

Some not-such-good-news. A few days ago, our landlord advised us that, because of an influx of people who want to celebrate the coming of the New Year here in Abakan, our rent will triple if we are here December 31, January 1-2. So to avoid this, we are leaving on December the 30th and will be in Krasnoyarsk on the 31st. Then he advised us that he was still  going to raise our rent this upcoming Tuesday the 25th of December. Which he has every right to do so. He is in business and wants to make money. Then yesterday, he wanted me to pay him, in advance, for December 25th through the 30th.

Then came the kicker! 

In addition to asking me to pay him in advance for the final days of our stay here in Abakan, he told us that we were going to have to move out of the flat we are currently occupying and move into another property. Mike said to me that I should not pay him for a flat we have not even seen. I agreed.

Then I went on-line yesterday to Priceline and found a place we can move into on Tuesday. Apartments at Ulitsa Nekroasova 8. A great looking apartment for less money than we are paying here. Two bedrooms etc. I gave Priceline my credit card as a guarantee (I signed a no cancellation clause) that we were good for the money. This morning Mike and I went to the new property and could not find an office. I asked Patti to call Priceline and get a telephone number. She did and called me with a telephone number. Mike called them immediately. Wonder of Wonders the phone number was good. They told Mike we would be paying double what Priceline guaranteed we were agreeing to. So now I have guaranteed a payment and it looks like I will pay double what I have in an e-mail from Priceline.

Just a little drama.

Cap and Patti who is really assisting me with the above issue.

4 thoughts on “DEC 23, 18 .. LUNCH WITH FRIENDS

  1. Patti Boone

    How very nice of Alexzay to invite you into his home and to prepare and serve a dinner to your small group. It really does say a LOT when someone opens their home. His place looks cozy! And, the soup looks wonderful. Hope all works out with the new place you will be moving to next. It certainly looks spacious and comfortable from what I saw on the Priceline link you sent to me. Off to a meeting myself .. Love, Patti

    1. cap chastain

      Yes it was nice to be invited to Alexzay’s home, and I had to lay down my policy of never eating in the home of someone in a foreign country. I told Mike before we went that I was NOT going to eat in his home. Mike said, “No problem Cap, we are going out to a cafe to eat.”

      In we came and there, with lunch on the table, blazing hot soup, I just dove in. Alexzay sent us home with an enormous pot of soup. So I had more soup for dinner. Then I had soup for breakfast on Monday morning. Not even the slightest hint of any food-borne bacteria-issues.

      Now to deal with the ‘apartment issue’. Much Love and THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR SUPPORT. Cap

  2. Robert 94596

    Thanks for the dam coverage. Wow, the Wikipedia article reminds me of both Oroville and Glenn Canyon dams with their spring flood spillway damages! We both know it is tricky business.

    Siberia looks brutal weather-wise. Our experience with Russian weather was on a Viking river cruise from St. Petersburg to Moscow but that was in the summer.

    1. cap chastain

      Yes, with regard to my post on blogspot about the SAYANO-SHUSHENSKAYA DAM, it was a good article on Wikipedia. Thanks for taking the time to look it over. And more issues with the dam arose when the Soviet Union collapsed and privatization took over. Very complex situation. YES the weather here is slowly ratcheting up as to its winter intensity. I was VERY impressed to learn that, way back in 1933, they had a respectably large dam in place and on line.

      Thanks Robert, friend of some 53 years, dating back to flood fighting together in late 1965 / early 1966 in San Francisco.

      Cap IN Abakan, Russian Siberia. Who’d thunk?

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