The last day of our tour

Russian church

The crew woke us up at 3:40 a.m. so that we could find time to take breakfast and pack our things. We were scheduled to arrive in the harbour at 5.00 a.m. Our plane to Moscow was to leave at 7.00 a.m.

When I went on deck to take some fresh air, I noticed that we were already in sight of the harbour, but the boat didn't move. I was astonished but found no explanation.

Than we got the answer: Resitzky came to us and asked whether I had taken photos when leaving the harbour. Sure, I had, like nearly everybody had. He told me, that one guardian had reported that one woman took photographs where it wasn't allowed. And now the ship was not allowed to enter the harbour until this woman came to the interrogation of the security officer, who was on board already.

I went to meet this man, accompanied by Vladimir Tarasov as a translator, and I knew that if I wouldn't admit my guilt, they would control all passengers luggage and than there were no chance to get our plane. But I felt very helpless.

The Security Officer told me that I took photos at the harbour and that this was forbidden. He asked me whether I knew that it was forbidden and I told him, that nobody told us. I then had to write down a report in which I admitted my crime and then they confiscated my photoapparat and two films. After 15 painfull minutes I was allowed to go.

My husband was happy to see me back. Surely, some years before, you were not allowed to leave after being trapped as a spy.

The boat entered the harbour and those of us, who left Arkhangelsk by plane, took the bus which rushed to the airport immediately. The others had some time left on the boat to take breakfast and to return to Arkhangelsk, from where they left by train. So we said goodbye to everybody in a hurry. Also Cornelia and Oleg stayed at the boat.

The bus driver, which we knew already from the festival days, because he always drove us back to our hotel late at night, now proofed the slogan which was printed on his t-shirt: STAN THE FLASHER. He drove like devil and managed that we arrived at the air port by time: 6:53 a.m.!! So we took our places, to the disappointment of the people on the waiting list, and the plane took off to Moscow.

At Moscow Airport Sheremetjewo I, Stephan Kersting left us. He took the plane to Hamburg directly from the neighbour airport Sheremetjewo II. We went to Nick's house to relax and take a shower.
I left all the other films I had taken during my tour, at Nick's house, undeveloped. Because all film rolls look the same, I was not quite sure whether I had surrendered the right films to the Security Officer. So, in any case, Nick could send the undeveloped films to Arkhangelsk to end up the situation.
In the afternoon, we left Russia by train.

Our train brought us back to Vilnius, to Vladimir Tarasov's house. He and Jason Hwang and Peter Veale were to take part in the Vilnius JazzFestival the following weekend. We had a nice goodbye-party at Vladimir's place.

Heinz-Erich and I left the next morning to Hamburg. Peter Motovilov and his wife Ann brought us to the airport and then our adventure was over.
Tour Map
Tour map of Autumn Melodies

When I think of this adventure, I am always angry with myself. I should have known not to take photos there. I travel around the world for 25 years now and everywhere in the world, you have to follow the rules. That's the same in Germany, Kenya or whereever. I feared, that our organizer, Vladimir Resitzky would have trouble because of my stupidity. So, today I know that everything is ok. My camera was sent to Moscow two days later and Dieter Glawischnig took her back to Germany, together with the undeveloped films. And Vladimir Resitzky telephoned that everything is in order. So this hard tour found a good end.

I apologize, Vladimir, for my stupidity, and I hope you will not have any more trouble!

And thank you for everything! Spacibo!

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