September 21, 2011
Dear Friends and Family,
When I was a very young boy, one of the first piano pieces I learned was a simplified version of the Russian folk song, “The Volga Boatmen.” “Yo, heave ho! Yo, heave ho!” Perhaps you also remember it?*
And now, after a short train ride from Vladimir, here I am, strolling down a promenade in Nizhny-Novgorod. Ornate classical buildings across the street on my left, and far below, on my right, the longest river in Europe, the Russian national river, the “main drag,” the broad and mighty Mother Volga! You will excuse me, won’t you, if I admit that I am pleased with myself? Here I am…at the Volga!