The Dep River, Russia, 2008

Here on the Dep River I learned to swim, to fish and to assemble a kayak of the type Taimen. Almost every year my parents and I “conquered” that route which, in fact, was for women and children — “a zero one” according to the complexity rank. Now, in seven years, I still recognize the familiar bends, reaches, hills and cliffs. This is the place where, years ago, a stormy gust overturned my Dad’s kayak, and that is the the very spit where I competed with my brother in throwing cobblestones in the game “who can throw farthest”. Then we invented another game with the funny name “Plop-and-splosh” (in Russian it sounds like “bulk-and-plukh”). The stone, which was thrown at a certain angle to the water surface, would come into the water with a dull sound and without any splashes but a bit later  bubbles and bow waves would show up on the surface – this was a plop (in Russian “bulk”). We used to thow until our shoulders started to ache with tiredness.

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