- Fashion Blogger
3:02 pm

Cafe Pushkin

16/11/2004, Moscow

Cafe Pushkin is this 24-hour Moscow institution that screams "old people=old money". It’s a cafe-slash-restaurant that serves traditional russian dishes, all prices in euros, and quite "elitny".

Jane and I went here on my first week in Moscow at around 2AM and it was dead empty so we went out immediately. The interiors are quite classic and rustic european and very traditional (high ceilings, french windows, you know the drill).

However, I really wanted to try this place cause I’ve heard so many reviews about it. Not giving up, I went ahead and invited Mark to have dinner with me.

We hired a Merc just to bring us to the restaurant. I wore a little baby blue and navy blue striped t-shirt, bleached jeans (old Mcqueen), chanel handbag, little white fox fur jacket, gold vintage cowboy boots and d&g chains and teddy bear appliques with crystals "patched" on my jeans. Mark wore a simple sweater and some jeans.

When we arrived, door person opened our Merc and I stepped out, stomping the ground with my cowboy boots as if it were a huge catwalk ala fashion week.

Security and door person welcomed us with a smile… at first I thought they weren’t gonna let us in because my outfit definitely doesn’t fit the venue. However, everyone was nice and friendly; I think this is one place where clothes DO NOT MATTER at all and I can be myself.

When we went inside, the entire crowd was in their late 40′s, most human males were in suits and most women were quite, well, elegant… and there I was, little camp asian boy in his little clubbing outfit.

Who gives a fuck though. Nobody cared, nobody bat an eyelid.

Waiter asked us for aperitifs; I asked for a gin tonic, and Mark asked for a sambuca.

Yes. a sambuca. at Cafe Pushkin. Imagine the look on the waiter’s face when Mark said that. Me and the waiter giggled (in a nice joking manner) and then I told him that we’ll just get Mark a gin tonic as well. Poor Mark… it must be tough to be in his shoes. Not only he has to tag along with the queen of the royal fags, but it was also his first time in a pseudoposh place.

I told him not to be concious and just be himself.

I placed my order — asked for blinis and caviar, and then a huge steak with potatoes and vegies. And with Mark being a gentleman, he said he didn’t want to eat anything and he’ll just drink instead.

I told him it’s ok, he can get what he wants and I’ll pay for it, but he continously refused to do so because he thought it was expensive and he didn’t want to "spend" my money.

I felt utterly guilty cause I spent the next 40 minutes pigging out in front of him and all he did was drink 3 gin tonics.

He still said it was ok.

Our bill… for my meal, about 7 gin tonics, and a bottle of evian, was around 130 euros.

Honestly, I loved the place. Everyone was nice and helpful, the service is extremely fast and swift, the doormen, security, waiters and ushers were very friendly and warm, the music was quite alright (although a bit in the dark ages… classical… violin players and all), our table was good, right beside the window, overlooking the street. Overall it’s a place if you would like to take someone for a romantic date.

12:00 pm

Quick trip around town

16/11/2004, Moscow

Mark and I went around Moscow for a teeny bit because it was so beautiful today — nice sky, some sunshine and little wind. I’ve been in Russia for almost 3 weeks and I haven’t even been on the metro. But today, I decided to go with him for a ride, even if it was only for a couple of stations. First we went from Byelorusskaya station (near my hotel) to the station in front of his girlfriend’s flat (see below) to meet his girlfriend, Victoria.

Mark (left) and his girlfriend’s flat (right)

They chatted for a couple of minutes at the station. Mark told me Vika is pissed and jealous cause he’s been hanging out with me for the past few days and she now thinks Mark is a little, well, bent… which is not true. Mark is just a very nice (and sweet) guy who cares. He’s a very good friend.

From there, we went to Okhotny Ryad, this big underground shopping center near Red Square. It’s this huge underground mall-like structure. Mark and I strolled around for a little bit before going to the food court. I told him I wanted to try Rostik’s, the Russian version of McDonald’s. They sell chicken ala KFC, friend chicken, chicken wings, etc. I bought a meal – 2 small pieces of chicken, some fries (which are nasty) and a drink. The chicken ain’t that bad… they were quite tasty actually. Mark showed me how expensive some of the things at Okhotny Ryad were. There was this kiosk that sells hand gloves and mittens – a couple of bad-looking leather gloves from Hungary were about US$100 each!!!!! I mean, if you saw those gloves, you would think they were cheap – they looked cheap! Those gloves shouldn’t cost more than US$15 I think.

From Okhotny Ryad, Mark and I went to Red Square. It was my 2nd time there — it was just beautiful. I took a couple of pictures; I had goosebumps while walking there. It was pretty much the epitome of Russia. Every single guidebook, web page, tourist books or brochures that have Moscow on it will show a picture of either St. Basil’s Cathedral, Red Square or the Kremlin in it.

2:35 pm

En Route to Moscow

13/11/2004, Moscow

God knows how many times I changed my plane tickets to Moscow.

I was supposed to fly back on November 11, then I changed it to 6:30PM today, then I changed it to 10:30PM. I skipped the 6:30PM flight coz I decided to meet Andrey halfway to the airport so he can buy tickets to Moscow as well. He’s going here tomorrow, November 13, until Monday morning. We’ll hang out, party and whatfuckingeva! :)

Here’s a pic of him at a bar in Pulkovo airport. It’s funny cause he hasn’t heard (or had) a "vodka red bull" in his entire life. I mean, hello, that’s because they drink vodka by the glass, without anything else. This is Russia, afterall. ;) So yeah… when we went to the bar, he got a vodka red bull for him… and one for me. He liked it. :)

He’s quite cute, isn’t he? I swear to god pictures don’t do him justice. He’s soo much cuter… and fitter in real life. You will literally melt when you see him. Ugh! I don’t even wanna talk about him or else I’d go gaga. I just can’t wait to see him in Moscow. His flight arrives at around 6:30 or so PM on Saturday and I’ll see whether or not I’ll pick him up cause I might see Jane today.

7:04 pm

Gangbanged by Navy Cadets

12/11/2004, Gangbang

After going to Pushkin Palace, the boys decided to throw a little indoor goodbye party for me at the hotel. We went to a real Russian market, bought some food, some caviar (US$30 for 1 kilogram), then to a supermarket to buy some booze, then called a special "someone" to get some "stuff"… if you know what I mean. ;)

As soon as we got into my room, bam!!! Fun, fun, fun!. I had 2 of the boys try on some my stuff cause they all looked like gansgters in black. LOL. I asked Poletay (see below) to try my Dior boots on and another guy to try my fox jacket and pose like a pimp.

Poletay in my Dior snow boots

Guess what happened next? ;)

I’m probably the luckiest guy in the world.

12:17 pm

Pushkin Palace with Russian Gangsters

12/11/2004, St. Petersburg

Oh my god. Guess what I did today?

Thanks to my friend Sasha (an English Teacher at a Naval Institute), I met like 7 Navy Cadets from Lenkom Naval Institute. We hired a big black Mercedes van and we went to Pushkin Palace in St. Petersburg to see the Amber room etc.

It was crazy. Me in my little camouflage outfit and them in their little black clothes, pointed-toe shoes and pants… they look like Russian gangsters. I swear to god everyone in Russia wears black. Boys, girls, men, women, everyone.

All the Navy Cadets were suprisingly friendly… at first glance they look very butch, very scary and very gangster-like. I probably have never been surrounded by that much testosterone in my entire life.

When we arrived in Pushkin, we went to a cafe first to have some drinks… then we walked to Pushkin Palace… everyone warmed up to me etc.

I’m actually supposed to fly back to Moscow today but I decided to extend my stay for 1 more night in St. Petersburg. I should’ve extended my stay longer. This is why I hate travelling… I always seem to meet the best people towards the last day or two of my visit. *sigh* Definitely next year I’ll visit St. Petersburg again…

Outside Pushkin Palace

Inside Pushkin Palace with my Navy Cadet Friends – Pic was blurry because Sasha’s hands were shaking… probably ;)

Surrounded by Testosterone. Crazy!!!!!

Sasha and Andrey

4:29 am

Mark… and Jane… and me.. lonely in Moscow

05/11/2004, Moscow

Meet some of my friends in Moscow – they don’t know each other btw.

Mark is a complete weedhead. ;) He lives in this tiny little flat in Moscow. He’s straight (goes out with a girl called Victoria). Mark is really sweet — he takes care of me and his friends as if we’ve known each other for a long time. His dad works in England and he lives by himself.

And meet Jane. Jane is actually quite well-off for Moscow/Russian standards. She’s an amazing girl. I met her through another girl called Kate, whom I met at the Fabrique club. She invited me to her flat and it’s brilliant. She went to school in Cambridge so her English is quite good. We’re both Urban Outfitters addicts. Her dad is a businessman – they own the Russian representative office for Daikin (a Japanese company). She drives an Audi. She brought me to tons of places, showed me what a Russian supermarket looks like (lol), drove me around at 4AM… etc. I’ve been hanging out with her almost every day since Monday. She might visit me to St. Petersburg this Saturday. I love Jane – she’s the best!

And this is me, taken a couple of minutes ago… it’s 11:27PM here in Moscow on a Thurrsday. I haven’t shaved for like 2 weeks. I need a bloody razor – I’m starting to get facial hair. Eeeew. I’ll ask the hotel later.

1:23 am

So so wreckless

05/11/2004, Moscow

Oh god.

I have never been so wreckless in my life.

I ended up going out with Mark, Valery, Natasha and Yulia.

It’s Thursday night here in Moscow and I was supposed to fly to St. Petersburg today at 3:50PM (leave the hotel at noon). However, I got home from clubbing with another bunch of newfound friends (Natasha and Yulia) at around 8AM.

I got back to the hotel at 8AM, all drunk and under the influence of Mama Mary, Jesus and Joseph. I haven’t packed any one of my bags – a ritual that will take a good 6 hours. What I did instead was, I called the concierge, gave him my airline tickets, passport, hotel reservation, the phone number of the car company (for transfers) and let him do the tedious tasks of changing everything for tomorrow’s departure.

I ended up spending around U$100 in penalties for the ticket alone, not to mention another extra night here at the Sheraton hotel, Moscow.

In any case, I had *so* much fun last night. We all went to 2 clubs — Zona (which had a gay night) and Garage, a straight club that plays R&B and Hip Hop.

Zona is this club where students and commoner Russian people go to, in other words, non-elitny. Jane, my Russian elitny friend told me it’s shite — it was… kind of, but the attention I got from commoner Russian people is priceless.

I drunk so much at Zona. Had a bottle of champers, about 6 or 7 vodka redbulls, 3 gin tonics and a good ol bottle of evian. Me and Yulia danced for a bit then we all spent time drinking — at our table… then at the bar.

When all 5 of us went to the bar, we ended up chatting to these 4 young-ish Russian guys/students. They are the classic "gobnyi key". In other words, they look like British scally people. Sportswear sweaters, baggy trousers, trainers.

For some strange reason, I think they are gay, particularly the semi-cutish guy with nice green eyes and dark hair who sat beside me. He was quite cute.. and had a nice smile. His english is horrible though. My friends had to play translator back and forth. They said they were straight – I kinda pretended I was straight, playing around with Natasha every once in a while. Mark said they can’t be trusted because they look a bit rough… but those 4 guys were nice, all smiling and talking to us.

Anyway, we left the 4 boys and went to Garage to dance the dawn away. Valery is such a good dancer and we danced in the middle of the dancefloor. Everyone was literally looking at us and everyone was dancing. It was all fun.

So yeah.. here I am, back in the hotel… gonna pack my stuff in a bit. I only got out of the hotel once — for 5 minutes, just to buy US$40 worth of prepaid/top-up cards for my Russian mobile.

I’ll take lots of pictures tomorrow. Bye for now!

1:36 pm

Excuses… and white lies

04/11/2004, Moscow

My friend Jane wanted to bring me to this club called Caligulla but I told her I’m gonna call off the night because I had to wake up early tomorrow. I know myself when I go clubbing — I drink an awful lot, do some stuff and dance till it’s 6 or 7 in the morning.

Prevention is better than cure.

So off I went to the hotel, checked my emails a little bit and then Mark’s friend Valery called me to checked what I was doing. She said she had 2 friends who wanted to see me and asked if they can drop by at my room and maybe we can all have a chat. I said ok — as long as we’re not going out etc cause I had to wake up early tomorrow.

Fast forward 1 hour later, Valery, Natasha and Yulia (the one with the blonde bangs) arrived.

All girls are soo soo fun. Natasha’s english is great. Whereas Yulia… oh my god, Yulia is just like "Bubbles" from Absolutely Fabulous. She’s one crazy girl – she’s a journalist of some sort for some Russian Music/MTV-like channel. She likes to make these little facial things which are sooo cute. I have this body shimmer powder thing and we played around with it like little teenage girls. LOL.

Natasha, Moi, Yulia at my room

Yulia, Natasha, Valery

12:48 pm

My little magazine stint

31/10/2004, Moscow

Meet Simon. He’s basically the 2nd Russian person I’ve spoken to the moment I got here.

I first met him online a couple of months ago on this Russian personals web site, He works for this Russian gay magazine, KVIR, as a writer.

He asked me some questions about the last 2 CDs that I bought. And bam, I’m on the magazine.

See the pic below. Interesting! ;)

7:00 am

Moscow Fashion Week

31/10/2004, Moscow

Thanks to my friend Simon, I was able to go to the last day of Moscow Fashion Week (October 30).

I didn’t do anything there really. He gave me a press ID/card, met with his straight Latvian friend (see photo below), and we watched the Gaspard Yurkevich show.