Tuesday, November 27, 2007

[tramvai of dreams] of trees and camshafts

The Linara Tree

The Linara Tree is very special. First you have to be super-intelligent, 20 years old and so beautiful that men would weep and gnash their teeth.

Then you must go to the black sea and get a smoothed pebble of a reasonable size, bring it back, wrap copper wire around it, attach two glass eyes for stability, then add white cotton foliage.

Now it's ready to present to your professor. Спасибо огромное, милая!

What a day. Next week I plan to post a photo of just the type of thing one must put up with over here - five of them today and every one could grace a Vogue magazine cover.

Then to the cafe and the paths were so treacherous it was just a shuffling slide the whole way. Perfect example of what I wrote about last week. Only minus 5 and yet so cold my back froze up through the jacket - the wind was coming off the lake and it was bitter.

The girls I cheerioed the other evening were there and "clustered", the pea and ham soup was wonderful, a warm time was had by all and then it was out into the chill again. Shuffle, stop, shuffle, stop, hood up, gloves on and still not enough. This was going to be tough but the soup was nice.

Tramvai eventually came to the wind whipped stop and all augured well, Higham the Iceberg stumbled up the steps, the feeling came back to the body and then, right in the middle of the busiest intersection imaginable, four lanes in each direction, the tram stopped. Now I hadn't wanted to say anything but the dirty great metal camshaft rolling around the tram floor was in for a surprise.

Suddenly the driver, a woman, came running out, the conductress, a woman, helped her lift the shaft off the tram, the lights changed, the horns reached a cacophany, the shaft turned out to be a tow bar and suddenly we were towing another tram, we stopped, the driver came rushing out, they both got off and collected the shaft and flung it back on the tram, the driver hurtled into a lady passenger, the conductress smiled at my dumbfounded expression, the tram started and that was the end of the fun.

Life can be difficult over here but it is never, never boring. Actually, the body core temperature I think did drop a fraction and the back hasn't responded in the warm flat so perhaps off to bed now is the answer.


lady macleod said...

you are SO the guy!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

I like the story of the tree. Again, what an adventure - so beautifully told for us. Thank you. Have you had a whisky to warm you up?

jmb said...

So when does it really get cold there? This makes me really glad that I live in the banana belt region.
I will miss the tramvai stories if they truly are taken off the roads there.

Anonymous said...

'five of them today and every one could grace a Vogue magazine cover.'

That really reminds me of being on the Moscow metro, with my dad, who's priest and a pretty moral kind of chap, looking around, and thinking...

(Homer Simpson style)

must not think sexy thoughts, must not think sexy thoughts, etc etc Obviously, I was a much younger man at the time!

(this might appear a little repressed for non Simpson fans, I assure you it isn't ~ seek out the episode where he has to work with Mindy, the new co-worker)

Liz said...

What a beautiful present!

James, I came back to comment on your Christian post as I didn't have time yesterday to do it properly but it's disappeared off the page. I know I could find it in the archive but I'll probably write something on my blog instead.

It's turned mild here again after a very cold night (-2!) last week.

Wolfie said...

I like these little stories too. Very enjoyable, thanks.

Nara said...

Dear professor! I like you very much, and I admire myself for being not confused to offer such a present for you! I hope it will bring good luck to you =)