About me


Russian-born, Moscow-based, Russian- and US-educated. Middle-aged. Professional… although still an amateur – a dilettante – in many ways.

The Rha is “a river of Asiatic Sarmatia,” according to Ptolemy – quite possibly the Volga, whose upper reaches are near the heart of Muscovy. The Rhipean, or Riphean, mountains “thought of as in the far north of Skythia, were to the Greeks as a region of clouds and thick darkness, sending forth the chilling blasts (ῥιπαὶ) of the North.” They are commonly identified with the Urals.

Now There Are Always Snows (“Теперь всегда снега”) is the title of a poetry book and a standalone poem by Gennady Aygi. I am not sure I understand Aygi’s work but I can’t resist thinking about that 1978 title now and then, imagining life in Moscow as a string of terribly long winters broken by brief spells of heat at times.

I’m same person who used to blog at The Russian Dilettante in 2003-7. I’m still based in Moscow and still trying to make sense of what’s going on around me, though less hopeful I can ever succeed. I have cleaned up some of my old posts and set quite a few to private, effectively deleting them as vacuous and/or embarrassing.


  1. Estragon says:

    Used to read you, wondered what happened to you, glad to see you back.

    • AK says:

      Good to hear that! I’m going to keep writing until Putin turns off the Internet in this country or starts hunting down bloggers.

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