Tuesday, December 12, 2006

HOLY FUCKING SHIT - WE'VE IMAGINED OURSELVES BACK IN TIME 20 YEARS

No pictures today, but even better news. Right now we're in Transnistria, a breakaway republic in the east of Moldova. Since no other countries recognize it as a country, it technically doesn't exist, so we aren't really anywhere. Well, Russia doesn't recognize it but they have troops stationed here to keep the evil capitalists out. So thus it sits here, not existing, but very real nonetheless--complete with its own currency, president, government, police force, military, and, most importantly, border checkpoints.

The president is named Igor Smirnov (yes, "Igor Smirnov"), and true to dictator cauture, dude's got some badass facial hair.



Our first attempt to enter lovely Trandnisteria was yesterday, at the main road from Chisinau (the real Moldovan capital) to Tiraspol (the fake Transdnisterian capital). At the border we were searched, then detained for about 45 minutes while the border guards attempted to extract a bribe from us. And then when we tried to bribe them, and they refused our Moldovan money and insisted on dollars. We had already told them we had no dollars (which was a lie), so they finally requested 400 Moldovan Lei (about 30 dollars). Then they withdrew that request when their boss walked in. Much fun was had, but they told us we had to return to Chisinau and put us off at the side of the road. This whole detaining lasted about one hour. We called the American Consulate, who described them as thugs, and said that we could just walk across the boarder if we wanted, since Transdnisteria does not exist. But he advised against it, for our own safety, he said. He also said the best thing to do was wait a couple of days, or just try to cross at another border. The Moldovian border guard on the real Moldovan side said we should just walk around the border, through the nearby vineyards.

Then I started snapping pictures of the border. The Transnistrians, who do not exist, didn't think this was funny, and crossed over to the Moldovan side to harass us some more. The Moldovan border guards cannot cross to the Trandsnistrian side, like at a normal border, but the Transdnistrian guards can, since Moldova considers them to be normal Moldovans. By the time he got to me I had erased the pictures, so he probably felt really stupid when I went through all the pictures and he saw shit. Haha, fucking loser. You work for a country that doesn't exist.

So today we crossed at a different point. No problems. We got to Tiraspol, and it's fucking hilarious. We had to go register our visas with the police, which was hilarious as well. Think thirty people trying to push through a single door, cash receipts from GazPromBank, and black-eyed Russians looking over your shoulder.

For some real red and yellow laffs, take a look at the government website. OMFG. LOL.

Tomorrow we take some pictures of Soviet style shit and head back to Chisinau. In the meantime, we are in Oz. It only exists if you belive in it.

5 Comments:

At 8:16 PM, Anonymous sass! said...

"...is more socially cohesive and economically vibrant than its larger neighbour [Moldova] – a failed state if ever there was one. Much of the reason for the divergence in living standards is that the Pridnestrovians have followed a more cautious approach to economic liberalization keeping many of the social benefits that existed under Communism. Compared with its neighbor, Pridnestrovie is like the Riviera. In fact, in the past three years the capital, Tiraspol, has been spruced up — even its infamous pavements are in the process of being re-laid; new shops and restaurants have opened. And, unlike most other post-Soviet societies, local restaurants and bars are affordable to locals."

 
At 3:18 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

BE CAREFUL!

love, mom

 
At 4:28 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow, such wonders in the thrid world, good luck and be well. Where you going to next?

 
At 5:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

they will destroy you

 
At 11:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And, unlike most other post-Soviet societies, local restaurants and bars are affordable to locals."

That's some quality bullshit.

They tried to "Western" us last night at a restaurant Mike slav-argued them out of that overcharge, and then tipped what they overcharged us, because, well, they're "poor" here.

SS

 

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