One moment I am in a stinky car, the other I am laying in a bathtub in a perfectly clean house and a peeping slow cooker with yummy food. I could not refuse when they asked me to come to the fitness. I was exhausted, not much of a Yoga-person - never mind in Russian - but I didn't want to be impolite, so I came along.

No one ever regretted doing sport. Especially when there is sauna included.

That evening I looked around me, finding myself at the dinner table in front of a 13 year old girl doing her homework.
I would take the room of their daughter and slept away my adventures of the past day.

I almost forgot all about slow travel and wanted to move on. But having the family in front of me begging to stay longer, so we could spend the weekend together, touched every little particle in my body.


On Saturday I was invited to the French class of the local school. The students could ask me questions and I answered them in French. In this way, they would learn to interact with native speakers (even though I am not).
The first daylight was pretty painful. We had been drinking until the early morning for the birthday of my new mother, Russian clubbing included. I felt groggy, but the wise words of my father were echoing in my brain. Or was that the headache?
"A hero in the evening, a hero in the morning."
After puking out my beetroot juice on the small school toilets I was ready for the waterfall of questions.
Me? Being in front of a class full of cute children in uniform, with their pigtails and pencil cases, books and glasses, throwing lumps to the other side. Nostalgia all the way.
I soon felt like a celebrity when the children were lining up to take selfies with me and asked for my autograph. They looked up to me, giving me compliments and were bragging with their autographs to each other in the hallway.


As if that was not enough excitement for one day, the father took me to the airfield and offered me to fly with him in a small two seated aircraft. I did not know where I had it. Was this really happening? He handed over the wheel and I was flying to the horizon. I felt complete. My legs were trembling and my heart splashed out of greatness.

Kazan has been unforgettable. I have seen every little detail of it. From the city to the outskirts, to the woods and the intimacy of a loving and warm family.

It was time to take my Transsiberian train to Yekaterineburg. On the platform I struggled with the law that travelling is all about fantastic encounters and crying them goodbye.