The broken Russian heart in Sochi

Alex is from far north, a Russian village where opportunities are limited. He comes all the way from the north to the south, and then from Krasnodar to Sochi. Every time I meet him, he always mentions his plan to move to Antwerp, the capital of fashion.

He wants to keep moving. He said. He is propelled by the ideal of freedom.

What keeps a person moving without a moment of doubt?

He didn’t want to move. He said. He literally got kicked out his home after his “true self” was discovered.

Apart from his family, there was only one person that he could trust and rely on, and that was someone he knew from Krasnodar.

Those were the happy days. They started a relationship and lived together. He found the sense of security that had been lost.

One day he was asked by his partner about his future plan. My future plan would be with you, my dear. He said. And yet that was not how his partner thought. His partner was going to Ukraine he said he would never be back.

Then, he left Krasnodar and came to Sochi, the city of future. He believed that Sochi would be the gateway to his bright future, with so many opportunities from the Winter Olympics 2014. Before he made his big money in Sochi, his savings had been stolen in two weeks.

“I find it hard to trust people,” he said, “good people don’t always stick around.”

More he tells me about his passion for passion, what I feel is only a strong sense of insecurity from the depth of his heart.

Perhaps “moving” may not be the best word to describe him, but “fleeing”. He literally flees from one place to another whenever he gets abandoned.

I hope someday he will meet someone who will fully accept who he is, literally a Russian gay boy from the north who is fond of fashion.



About Brian Yeung

Growing up in Hong Kong, pearl of the orient, I have been exposed to many cultures throughout my upbringing, from Sushi to British Top Talents and Tetris. And yet, after my stay in Europe, Russia and Southeast Asia for study and work, I realise a lot of cultural perception and presentation are just myths and stereotypes. Exploring the real accent of a particular country and its culture becomes my agenda of traveling. I value travel as a way to discover the diversity of life choices. After all, life is just the consequence of our many life choices; the one who is aware of its diversity is the luckiest person alive.

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