It was quite a busy week. Our friends Lenka and Dima, a Czech-Russian couple who live in Sweden, were visiting St. Petersburg, and an old college friend, Dmitry, took a break from visiting his grandparents in the Moscow region to come up to the Northern Capital for a couple of days. We gathered a few more friends together and rented my friend Miron’s tour boat for 3 hours one evening, like we did for my 30th birthday last summer. There is nothing more fun than cruising the rivers and canals of St. Petersburg on a summer evening with good friends, a couple mix CDs and an ample supply of alcohol.

In between boating and covering most of central St. Petersburg on foot several times over with our visitors, I managed to teach 15 academic hours and do some empirical research for my thesis. I spoke a lot of Russian this week, more than the usual practical necessities and household conversations with Kostia. My brain hurts.