20 years ago, in 1989, I visited previous time Moscow. It was a summer full of strong emotions, youth and great adventure in Soviet time. Now, when I returned in May 2009 the landmarks like Moscow State University (Московский государственный университет имени М.В.Ломоносова) were still in my mental map and my expectations from the new visit were high. To understand Russia, you just need to understand the Russian soul [душа], music and culture. I am slowly learning these elements and perhaps my Carelian roots help me in this process ;-) So, I had a feeling like coming home :)
During my life I have had the honour to have many excellent mentors and hosts. This visit was no exception. Professor in physiology, Osmo Hänninen originally invited me to Moscow in the Environmental BioIndicators conference and the Kotelevtsev family was a great host on site.
Update 25th May 2009: My presentation in the Environmental BioIndicators conference partly focused on:
A) Abnormal growth caused by RF radiation in plants, insects, animals and humans
B) The consequences of ultra-high guidance levels in fostering abnormal growth and other side effects
C) Siting and configuration of base stations and other wireless technologies to minimise damage
Meeting with professor Yuri Grigoriev (Юрий Григорьев) was memorable, we talked (in Russian), eat and drink for many hours. As the head of Russian National Committee of Non-Ionising Radiation Protection (RNCNIRP) Yuri has amazing experience:
- Being a medical officer already in the 2nd World War
- Developing artificial, natural-like electro-magnetic fields to space ships (Sputnik-programme)
- Being one of the first doctors/professors in Chernobyl in 1986 to investigate the catastrophic situation
- Understanding early how the effects of non-ionising radiation are not just ... thermal [Russian research about biological effects, Update: see also examples in English : ,[ 2],, . Update 29th July 2009: Check those reports RNCNIRP provided to WHO ,. Already in 2003 RNCNIRP commented that ICNIRP guidance levels are out of date and children and pregnant women , should be protected.
So, we had both serious and non-serious topics.
Since 80's a lot has changed in Russia. Nowadays Moscow is more colourful, lively, multicultural and versatile. I also like Russian sense of "accidental" humour, which is occasionally visible, like next to Red Square :-)
Update 25th May 2009: The role of arts and music has always been important in Russia. Therefore, Moscow continues to have a lively music and dance scene. Both Russian and Foreign. I personally like many kind of Russian music, from Red Army Choir to DDT and Sofia Rotaru. To a Finn, Russian melodramatic and melancholic 'spices' are just great, after you get used to the language ;-)
The only thing I didn't like in Moscow is traffic. The picture shows how crowded the streets were next to Kreml and generally in Moscow. The alternative is always the subway, but somehow I don't feel comfortable there ,.
Much more I prefer taxis and instead of fancy Japanese and German cars in Moscow I chose to enjoy (rare) Lada taxi rides ;-)
I will definitely visit Russia once again soon, whether Moscow or St Petersburg.
До свидания, Дорогие Дружъя!