Sunday, 1 July 2012

Izmaylovo market

This afternoon I took the Metro across to the north-eastern side of Moscow, to an area called Partizanskaya to a huge sprawling market the size of a village. I've found navigating the Metro and interpreting the cyrillic much easier now, after I've developed my own system for reading it. For example, something like Школа becomes Willy Wonka station. It's a little childish but it gets me from A to B. 

Crowds flow through Moscow's Metro.
The market I went to was predominantly filled with tourist tat and bygone Soviet militarism, as well as arts and crafts, books and bric-a-brac. It was an open air museum-meets-jumble sale, housed in a strange Russian wooden Disney prototype, of fairytale towers and Grimm Brothers cottages. There were lots of old Soviet cameras, as well as various communist paraphernalia and military items, and had I only been here on a short holiday, I'm sure I would've bought a few things to take back home. There were even grenades, machine guns and mortar rounds, I assume all decommissioned and no longer live, but I wouldn't fancy bringing any of them through customs. 

Walking to the entrance of Izmaylovo market. 
Russian dolls

Old vendors playing chess

Old books for sale
Most of the dusty, moustachioed traders were more preoccupied with dozing, or doing their own thing, rather than any hard sell. You had to pester them if you wanted to buy something. The only thing I bought was a small pin badge, that actually only has the pin for a hat, not a jacket. I wanted a trinket of some kind, but nothing too big I would have to carry for the rest of Asia. I didn't buy the stereotypical dolls, I couldn't imagine having them on my shelf when I get back home anyway.

The market was a mixture of tourists and Russians, and reminded me a little of Camden Market in London. It's as much an attraction as it is a functioning market. There were quite a few Americans milling about, as well as a mixture of Europeans. I heard my first few British accents, both cases were middle aged couples rowing about something - I thought it sounded familiar.

More dolls. I didn't buy any.
Kebab lads - 'Hello Boss, mixed doner and chips?' Not quite, but the patter was almost the same.


Partizanskaya Metro station.
Moving back through the Metro to my couch-surfing home.

My local neighbourhood.

1 comment:

  1. Really enjoying your blogs Ben - photos are wonderful, as if I haven't got enough to do, I've now got to make time in my week to read these! Thank you for sharing, they are so interesting and really beautiful.