Tessa's Tête-à-Tête
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September 2005


Battle of Britain

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August 2005

More Surgery!"

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Sunday, 7 August 2005
The Russian Mini-Submarine
Topic: In the News
Some good news at last! After three days on the seabed tangled up in fishing nets, the seven trapped Russian seamen are safe. I can't imagine anything worse than having to sit still for 76 hours in a confined dark space, in freezing cold conditions, whilst you wait for your oxygen to run out! Three cheers for the six-man team operating our British Scorpio underwater robot craft, which was flown out to Kamchatka and delivered to the site of the rescue operations by a Russian ship. Thank goodness they were in time to save the men who reportedly had about 10-12 hours of oxygen left.

Apparently all the Russians were very brave and never complained during all that anxious waiting time. The memory of what happened to the Kursk in 2000 is still very fresh in Russian minds and they all feared the worst. I felt so sorry for the wife of the mini-submarine's commander, who was shown on BBC news last night as she tried to reassure their small twin girls that 'daddy was on a ship and would be coming home'. Well, now he is coming home and she has told Russian TV that, "I danced. I was glad, I cried and I danced for joy". A really 'happy ending' to a potentially tragic disaster.

Posted by Noviomagus at 12:49 BST Post Comment | View Comments (3) | Permalink

Monday, 8 August 2005 - 13:22 BST

Name: Joanna

Mean-spirited of me, no doubt, but this was another occasion when I thought about how awful it would be to live in one of the still or recently ex-communist countries...everything wretchedly poor, badly made, falling apart, shabby. Particularly it would be horrible to work in the Russian military where personnel have to go without paydays sometimes, work with miserably unreliable equipment. Once again they had to be baled out by much-vilified capitalists. At least this time, Russian authorities admitted in time that they needed help.
Sometimes I feel that we in the USA have so much that it's ridiculous when compared with droopier parts of the world. We are too fat, too comfortable, truly spoiled in every way. Anytime I get all guilty about this, I also must admit that I wouldn't have it any other way!

Monday, 8 August 2005 - 18:16 BST

Name: Tessa

No, not a country to live in especially with all the violent crime they can't control!

And yes, Communist leaders, such as Nikita Khrushchev and Leonid Brezhnev, were so paranoid about the West and the 'arms race' that they spent far too much on weapons, tanks, aeroplanes and atomic submarines, etc., during the cold war. All to the detriment of the people living behind the Iron Curtain. Now, Russia can't afford to keep its navy in good condition let alone replace vessels which should have been scrapped years ago.

N.B. Never fly in a Russian aeroplane!

Thursday, 11 August 2005 - 12:48 BST

Name: Joanna

A friend's experience forever dissuaded me from any desire to see to Russia firsthand. I was at her house on the day she packed her bags and saw that most of the space in her luggage was taken up with toilet paper. She had been warned that in hotels you can't assume there will be any. Also, when you call down to the desk to ask for toilet paper, they bring you A PIECE. Period. With toilet paper so scarce, she hoped to use her extra supply in trade for other little things she might need but didn't know in advance to bring from home. Since then any time I hear someone rhapsodize about the wonders of Russia, I mentally add, "But no toilet paper."

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