A cry of triumph is loud; it drowns out cries of fear, of pain, of sadness, of anger and of failure. It’s the closest a man can get to the voice of God.
Y and I exit the mall. It is dark, it is wet–an autumn afternoon in St. Petersburg.
A flood of meat and cheap poster-board press us back towards the door. There is excitement in the air. We move aside, around. We head for the subway entrance.
People are angry, holding up soggy red signs.
Three massive caged buses pull up on the street. Three dozen or so Hippopotamus in riot gear trample off into the square.
I turn to Y, “What the hell is going on?”
She looks on, curious. “It’s Putin’s birthday,” she tells me.
The Hippos start to charge, helmets down and batons up. Birdies fly overhead. The young crowd pushes onward, many holding signs…