Thursday, January 7, 2016
The first Thursday of every month it is free to get into the Hermitage. Since it was the first Thursday of the month we decided to go. Everyone says that would should just buy the tickets online and avoid the lines. I would definitely suggest that any other time of the month, or if it is SUPER cold. Also, unless you go really early, you risk the chance of not being let in for free because there are too many people. We decided to go early and wait in line. It was fine until my feet started getting cold. I am used to being cold, and it honestly I can handle it to a certain point. However, we were standing in line on top of snow for an hour and a half.
There is nothing worse than your feet getting cold. I had boots (granted, they weren't lined with any insulation) but they had a pretty thick sole and I was wearing two pairs of socks. When you're feet are cold there really isn't anything you can do. Katherine kept asking me if I wanted to leave and go somewhere warm, but I just kept saying "no," because I felt bad we had waited in line so long. However, I just kept getting colder and colder. I'm almost positive I legitimately experienced a mild form of hypothermia. I have never been so cold or experienced such a sensation in my life. I was shivering and shaking then at one point I just stopped, I sort of tuned out everything that was going on, I felt my body get super warm, and if I had closed my eyes I knew I would have passed out. Katherine said it looked like my eyes were going into the back of my head. It was a few minutes after that point that I realized I couldn't stand in that line anymore. I started crying a little bit because I just felt so awful. I definitely owe Katherine for that one. Since there were so many people waiting to go in it was going to take another 30-60 minutes and I knew I could handle it. My feet hurt so bad as we left. We ended up going to Шоколадница near the Hermitage to warm up. After drinking tea and hot chocolate we decided to just buy tickets online because it wasn't worth dying from hypothermia. ;) But I do consider that my 5 year story.
We still had to wait inline a little bit but not nearly as long as we did the first time. People kept trying to cut in front of other people. It was such a mess. Eventually, we got in, and at that point they were only letting those people who bought tickets into the museum. The museum was so beautiful, and as you can tell I was fascinated by the ceilings!
Burger & Wok where we both got "spicy" noodles. Russians don't like spicy food, so when I say they were spicy they weren't actually that spicy. The guy even came over to warn us, but we knew better. ;) We then headed back to the hostel where I made sure my feet still looked normal!