One day during teatime, the mother told me stories about former travellers and how it was difficult to get accepted in the village. Since they are vegetarians, hung up a flag and built a Mongolian yurta, the villagers thought they were anarchists looking for trouble. “We will burn you” and “I will kill you all, devils” were some of the threats she still remembered.
That same evening I entered in the main house, finding their 2-year-old playing alone, no one else there. I felt awkward so I started to play with the kid. Abruptly the power broke down and my brain went out for a walk.
I saw the pregnant mother shouting for her husband at the burning yurta and the village people approaching the house with torches and pitchforks. I took the girl under my arm and started running into the woods. She cried; And I really had no clue what to do at all.
Someone came in and lit a candle. “That happens here quite often”, she said: “the whole village is without electricity and now we wait until it’s fixed.”
A cosy evening by candle light followed, and just sometimes, I felt like living in a bad horror film.
I felt pretty stupid most of the time, because misunderstanding the situation was becoming more and more my new thing. When Russians have normal conversations they have a very strong expression - no uplifting mouth corners - so for me they are arguing all the time.
While I would think the couple was fighting in the second room, I got invited to join the "discussion". I carefully opened the curtain leading to the room I had never entered before. The mother was laying on the bed with her belly naked. She took my hand, so I could feel the baby kick as well.
Siberia: where every stressful situation turns out to be a magical moment.