The Steaming River

In an attempt to stay sane while all my deadlines come and go, I headed out for a bit of a longer run on Monday, escaping further from home to give myself a change of scenery while I was at it.

I headed out to the open air museum Kolomenskoye.

Screenshot 2014-12-05 10.09.17Lovely and quiet on a weekday morning, I made my way past large wooden buildings, forts, and occasional signposts down to the river, where the ground was nice, even and flat. This route brought me to a surprising sight- as large plumes of steam rose up from the river, birds, ducks and seagulls especially, flew in and out of the mist, or bobbed on the surface of the river.

Although during the last few days it has been cold enough that there has been steam rising up from the drains in the pavement, this was something fairly new to me. In fact most of the Moscow river is almost frozen at the moment.

On the metro there I had already seen a steaming lake, and the more I think about it, the more I am sure that this must be a sign that the water is used as part of some sort of production process. Google maps also strengthens these suspicions due to the wonderfully uniform ponds on the other side of the river. I wondered, as I plodded along, if the the warmth was good for the poor birds that have nowhere to hide from the biting cold. I also wondered if it has entirely changed the downstream ecosystem- as so many creatures are very sensitive to temperature changes.

Somehow, the rest of my run seemed colder, and I plodded my way up and down a few hills before heading home, high on endorphins and wondering about the seemingly non-existent eco-movement in Russia. Is it just hidden from my exchange-student point of view?

At home I once again noticed the new signs that hang in every stairwell: ‘Dear Students, we now have a new waste-paper-recycling facility! For any questions, please address yourselves to the house caretakers.’ Not even a mention where it is- but a good sign.

(Sort of) part of the VRUK Blog Hop

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