Dacha with Lady Friends.

Some time in June my cousin invited me to join her and her friends at N’s summer house. There will be ice-cream, she said.

Well. That’s all I needed to know. ’twas a lovely Saturday morning when we bought enough food to sustain a small army, loaded it into Jarvis, picked up N and her cousin, and drove to our designated location. There we ate, and talked, and drank, and listened to terrible ’90s Russian pop (which I love, mind you), and played trivia games, and were merry.

Whenever I’m at some get-together, I take very little photographs. Which deeply perpetuates the idea that I don’t really go out. And while I’m more reclusive than anyone I know, sometimes I do crawl out of the house in the company of other people. It’s just that I never document it. Rarely ever people behave naturally in front of the camera. Behaviour changes so much whenever I take one out, it’s uncanny. Most people lock down, others begin to act out (frankly, I don’t know which is better – I guess it depends on the person), and rarely ever someone stays as they were. For me, it ruins the mood instantly.

So even if I haul my camera with me, I rarely ever whip it out.

This time was no exception. Only when there was a lull in conversation and people started literally falling asleep from all the food and the drink and the fresh air and sun did I step quietly away to take some pictures of N’s garden.

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Eventually this will grow and cover the entire terrace, which will make it even cooler than it is now. Natural climate control. I love these things.

Also, see that lawn chair in the background? Wars broke out because of it since everyone wanted to tan a bit. Except me. I was happy with my food and book in the shade. I don’t like the sun.

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I like my flowers how I like my men: all natural, moderately cultivated, slightly dishevelled, and nicely but not overbearingly scented.

TMI? Maybe.

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Hello, dog. OK, here’s some more TMI, involving a story about this dog’s bollocks. Actually, there’s not so much of a story, aside from the fact that Rex (that’s his name) had absolutely majestic ballz. I wasn’t the only one to think that, but naturally I was the first one to blurt it out. Everyone who was awake agreed with me, and some people (read: my cousin) even took photos of it with her tablet. That dog’s got ballz, I’m telling you.

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And this is what happens when one thinks about mites too much. N’s father told us that this year’s population of mites was totally epic, which distracted me enough to fuck up my camera’s settings. I only noticed this when I came home and unloaded stuff onto computer. Hey, tick-borne encephalitis is the last thing I want in my life right now. Well, any kind of encephalitis… Plus I’m not sure we have encephalitis mites around here… Not the point, still not fun. Anyway, so I was too busy shakin’ my skirts and skippin’ through tall grass patches to truly pay attention to my camera settings.

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Which is why all you get is two rather grainy/ flat photos of my cousin taking pictures of N…

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… an innocent path on acid…

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… and that’s it! After that we all loaded ourselves into Jarvis (that’s K’s car, btw) and drove home.

Oh, and as I was getting into the car, a mite did fall off my skirt. So my fears weren’t unfounded.

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