Our Russian "Flat"

The Living Room reminds us so much of many of the Russian flats we've visited over the years. The Living Room reminds us so much of many of the Russian flats we've visited over the years.

Robert ? June 2005

Today, June 20th, we got a call from Sharon Neufeld who was sitting in what is now our new Russian home, finalizing the deposit arrangements to secure our rental agreement.  Sharon, who is finishing up her two-year language school program at New View in Krasnodar is an East-West missionary from the Houston area and she will be taking a position with the BLTC pastor training center in Krasnodar.  She has been a huge blessing to us in the past few weeks with the many logistical details that needed to be nailed down before our move.  She was instrumental in finding us this apartment. 

The Russians refer to their apartments as "flats", and that's how most of them live.  In fact, in staying true to form under communism, most flats are almost identical in layout.  They have always taken quite seriously the idea of having all things in common.  If you've seen one Russian flat, you've seen 'em all. 

No, this isn't trick photography.  This is really a Russian bed that is bigger than a twin. No, this isn't trick photography. This is really a Russian bed that is bigger than a twin.

We are really excited by what we see of the flat in the photos Sharon emailed us.  It comes with a few pieces of furniture already in place and one of the biggest beds I think I've seen in Russia.  They say it is 160mm by 200 mm, which I think may be almost as big as a queen size bed.

The flat is on the 10th floor of our building.  There is a great view from our bedroom balcony.  We have another balcony off of the living room.  Each balcony houses a window unit air conditioner.  Wow!  Did I just say "air conditioner"!  God is so good!  We are thinking we might set up desks in each of the two balconies to provide us each with a seperate area for our studies.  Though we are used to working together, we both require a pretty high degree of isolation for effective concentration.

The kitchen has a pretty large frig by Russian standards. The kitchen has a pretty large frig by Russian standards.

As you can see from the photos, the flat isn't as colorful as what we might be used to, but you can also see that the owners have just recently done considerable remodeling, painting and wallpapering, so we won't be asking them if we can repaint.  We will find some alternative means of adding color.  I'm sure hanging some of our pictures will add a bit of warmth and hominess. 

No, we haven't seen a tub that big in Russia before either. No, we haven't seen a tub that big in Russia before either.

When Ann saw the picture of the bathroom, she had a special sense that God was looking out for her.  Since her foot surgery, getting in and out of the bathtub had been such a challenge that seeing the handle on the bathtub just seemed like another way of God saying, "Trust me.  I will care for you, even in the small things."

The photo seems to indicate that the tub takes up the entire bathroom as the doorway from the hall seems to cast a short shadow on the tub, but can see there is also a lavatory and are also told that the bathroom also includes a wash machine.  So, we are expecting the room to be a bit bigger than it appears.  We are not however expecting the tub to include jets of any kind in case you wondered.

The view from our bedroom balcony The view from our bedroom balcony

As I look at the photo of what we will see from our 10th floor balcony, I have to wonder about all that our new location holds for us.  I know God has much to teach us in Krasnodar.  I know as well that outside our little Russian flat await many Russians with whom God has arranged for us divine appointments.  In some of those appointments I hope and pray that we will be used to make a lasting difference, but I also know that in many of those appointments, God has prepared for us opportunities to see our own lives transformed in ways we can not even imagine.

Krasnodar, we're on our way and we are excited about ALL that awaits us!  Bring it on!"Contact Us" link here or in the column to your left for our new address.