Tuesday, January 2, 2007

MOSCOW and the Learning Zone

I have one more day in Moscow. My travel from St. Peterburg begins by missing my flight. I misread the departure time and thought it said 1:20 - instead of 12:00. Oops. I catch a flight an hour later and am shocked that there is no penalty fee. As I contemplate my last night in Russia, I waiver between "going big" and getting a $600 hotel room downtown and relaxing for the last night, or going back to the hostel. I am feeling much more confident now and step out of the airport ready to dial in my last day. I decide to take Moscow head on, and quickly negotiate a taxi for 1200 rubles (800 less than what I paid the first time!) I return to Godzillas hostel and and welcomed with open arms by the reception folk. It was nice to see them again. Everything is feeling much more comfortable. I take a nap and head out for the last night. One of the highlights is a Russian shot called the Green Dragon. The shot is topped with Absinthe and it goes down in flames! (Email me if you want the recipe!) Rock and roll... i party fairly hard and end up back at the hostel hanging out with a VERY random guy, playing music and jamming until the wee hours.

I arrived in Russia without any experience of the culture, the language, or knowledge or my surroundings. It was a bit nerve wracking and personally challenging. The experience was definitely out of my comfort zone. By the time I returned back to Moscow, I has the basics of the Russian Language, a comfort level with the culture and an overall confidence in travelling in this foreign land. This was a perfect Learning Laboratory of the comfort zone and how it works. NOW - I have expended my ability to travel in general, and my experience has provided me with a greater sense of confidene and knowledge that i CAN and WILL always handle new and challenging situations. Embrace the Learning Zone. It may be uncomfortable at the beginning, yet the rewards of expanding your capacity as a human are well worth the effort!

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