I am suffering from Major cabin fever. In the spirit of family I have relegated myself to a cabin in the middle of nowhere, 40km from Baku.
Basically in Russian, the word "dacha" means holiday home, where people go to relax, unwind, cook a few barbecues and do little else. In the Soviet Union they had huge "dachas" for the ruling classes, where government ministers and the big bosses could go away and chill with their families in the lap of luxury (in Soviet terms) and rub elbows with their influential colleagues. There would be around one hundred homes in a gated settlement usually on the coast. In the evenings people would dress up to the nines, take the air and go for long leisurely strolls, smiling graciously and greeting each other as they went.
I am staying in a modern version of this uniquely Soviet institution. And it is lovely. The grounds here are breathtaking, surrounded by towering pines and conifers, with the air smelling faintly of Christmas. The only thing amiss is the speed of my Internet connection, which makes it near to impossible to do anything besides whining about it. So instead my Kindle and my 2 year old cousin are keeping me company.
So really this post was essentially a long explanation as to why my blog isn't seeing much action lately. But back home to London in a few weeks and I promise to redeem myself.