10 December 2006

Mi amigo, Sasha

Sasha lives in my apartment complex and talk to me every opportunity he has, even though he speaks no English and my Russian is limited to statements like, “Ya nye gavaryoo po russky,” which translates to, “I don’t speak Russian.” I have explained that to him several times, but he doesn’t even pause to listen. He appears to be very concerned with what works and what doesn’t work in the neighborhood and many of our “conversations” involve descriptions and sometimes even hand-drawn schematics of mechanical and electrical systems. He also gives me things he finds, the last being a small plastic pawn from an inexpensive chess set. Sasha is almost always smoking a cigarette made from locally grown tobacco that he rolls with newspaper. He prefers a cone-shaped design that looks like a Rastafarian’s spliff.

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