Bonnie’s Trip to Russia

Bonnie’s Trip to Russia

When I was a little girl, my very best friend, Bonnie Ann, lived just across the street. That’s me on the the left with my “pixie” haircut that my mother adored. I coveted Bonnie’s hair, because she could wear pigtails.

Andrea and Bonnie

When I was seven, my brother was born, and I was sent to my aunt’s house for a week while my mother and baby Billy were in the hospital. When I came home, Bonnie’s family had moved. I was heartbroken. Bonnie told me months before she was moving, but I never believed she actually would.

She came back to visit a couple of times, but then I didn’t see her for decades.

Until recently. A couple of years ago, she tracked me down. We reconnected through a blog post I wrote for Doing Life Together. We friended each other on Facebook, and last spring she came to Phoenix to judge dog obedience trials, and we got to spend a couple of hours together.

Bonnie recently traveled to Russia for three weeks. She posted hundreds of photographs on Facebook, and gave me permission to share some of them with you. I picked out just a few, mostly highlighting Russian architecture and art.

Bonnie is in most of these pictures. It’s amazing, isn’t it, how much she looks like she did in the picture above, even though she’s only a year younger than me (er, twenty-nine…).

The Marine Canal looking toward the Grand Cascade & palace. — in Peterhof, Sankt-Peterburg, Russia.

Peterhof – Tzar Peter the Great’s summer palace known as the ‘Russian Versailles’

Old Stalingrad market.

A mosaic at the Old Stalingrad market

Railroad station ceiling mural depicting the 1918 Russian Civil War. — in Volgograd, Russia.

Mural on the ceiling of the railroad station in Volgograd, depicting the 1918 Russian Civil War.

Statues (click on the smaller images to enlarge and reveal captions):





All Saints Church

All Saints Church, Volgograd

Catherine the Great’s Summer Palace:



Church of the Blood. — in Saint Petersburg, Russia

The Church of the Blood, St. Petersburg

Palace Square - Hermitage, Saint Petersbury

Hermitage, Palace Square, St. Petersburg

Interior of St. Peter:Paul Church

Interior of St. Peter and Paul Church, St Petersburg

Our Lady of Vladimir Cathedral's bell tower — in Saint Petersburg, Russia.

Bell tower of Our Lady of Vladimir Cathedral, St. Petersburg

St. Basil's. Famous Kremlin clock tower on left.

The iconic St. Basil’s Cathedral, Moscow; Kremlin bell tower at left


Friendship of People Fountain in Moscow. The sixteen figures represents the 16 different cultures of the old Soviet Union. The statue over Bonnie’s right shoulder is special to Bonnie, because it represents the Ukraine, which is part of Bonnie’s heritage.

The Cathedrals of the Kremlin:


Changing of the Guard at Kremlin

Changing of the guard at the Kremlin



Red Square

Red Square; Kremlin on the left


Russia's largest shopping mall - GUM Department Store at the Red Square - built in the 1890's.

Russia’s largest shopping mall – GUM Department Store at the Red Square – built in the 1890’s.


Vodka museum

The Vodka Museum. Pretty door.

Pretty staircase within Izmaylovo Kremlin

Pretty staircase within Izmaylovo Kremlin

Stalin's grave

Stalin’s grave


Samovars for sale in a marketplace

Eggs 1

Decorative eggs

Matryoshka dolls

Nesting Matryoshka dolls

Putin's Palace, Moscow

Putin’s Palace, Moscow

View of Kremlin and St. Basil from cruise ship

View of the Kremlin and St. Basil from cruise ship on the Moskva River

The subway station in Moscow must be one of the cleanest and most beautiful in the world:

Subway art

Traditional Russian folk art – Gzhel – on subway wall

Mosaic of Ukranina Soviet workers in sub station

Mosaic of Ukranian Soviet workers

Sickle and hammer in sub station

Sickle and hammer from Soviet times

Moscow subway station

Yes, this is the subway.

A great big ARHtistic License thank you to Bonnie Lee for generously sharing her beautiful photographs.




About Andrea R Huelsenbeck

Andrea R Huelsenbeck is a wife, a mother of five and a former elementary general music teacher. A freelance writer in the 1990s, her nonfiction articles and book reviews appeared in Raising Arizona Kids, Christian Library Journal, and other publications. She is currently working on a young adult mystical fantasy novel and a mystery.

10 responses »

  1. Wow, what pictures and she’s so lucky to be able to go there (she has a wonderful smile). So great you guys reconnected and we’re able to see the pictures. (When Billy was born did you stay w/us?)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Well, it looks like I was causing trouble for you right from the beginning! At least you were able to re-connect with Bonnie again. The pictures are quite beautiful. It makes me think of how different and beautiful some of the places, architecture, and art are in Germany also.

    Liked by 1 person

      • Sorry for the delay in my response, Monica (I don’t go on a computer more than once or twice a week, usually). But all is well with me, thank you for asking! I hope all is well with you and Jens, too.


      • Other than me having conjuctivities in the eye right now, we’re doing fine being retired. Glad all is well with you. Hope you’re having a good summer, hotter than Haities here in Florida now, is 94 in the sun but I know it’s even worse out west.

        Monica & Jens


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