Yesterday I went to visit the Archeology museum, it was closed and looks like it’s been closed for quite a while. So I went to Valea Morilor and walked in the wooded area surrounding it. It’s too hot, and with less things to see I’m starting to alter my behaviour. Rather than going out and visiting as much stuff as I can, learning as much as possible, now I just go on long walks with nothing at the end of them. It’s easy to relax here, flitting between cafés, ice cream in the park, dinner at a restaurant, unfortunately you can only do it for so long before it gets boring. Tomorrow I’m going to the bus station to catch a bus to one of the villages or settlements on the outskirts of the capital. Maybe Strășeni, or Cricova.

The hotel won’t wash my clothes, and the launderette nearby is more an operation for dry-cleaning suits than my stinky socks. I’m on my last t-shirt so in the absence of anything better I’ll have to wash everything in the sink and leave it to dry in the room.

I got some shampoo/shower gel to replace the bottle I left behind in Tiraspol. Most shops don’t sell extra cosmetic things like shampoo, you need to get them in pharmacies, and the pharmacies here are proper medical facilities. No aisles of perfume, just little counters staffed by ladies in clean white jackets. One of them asked which shampoo I wanted (there are lots), after I said I didn’t mind she eyed me up before reaching right to the back of the cupboard, handing me a bottle for ‘very damaged and lifeless hair’. Well, I see the sun hasn’t helped my hairstyle.

I’ve finished reading Marx’s critique of the Gotha programme. It was a solid holiday book. I wasn’t paying attention to all the explanatory notes and annotations so it may need re-reading for full comprehension.

For today, I went to the Pushkin museum in the morning. There were some of his original manuscripts and drawings, I’ll admit I don’t know his work so most of it just passed me by. I was surprised to learn he was a supporter of the Decembrist revolt, and his romance with the gipsy woman sounds tragic. The museum is small, tucked away, and I was the only visitor.

I then went to see the RTEC transport museum, which was closed. The Bucuria sweet factory also could not be visited, and the back of it was extremely well guarded with barbed wire and a watchtower. I don’t see why the precaution because the factory itself looks like a wreck. I didn’t buy anything in the factory shop, unless anyone at home wants some Moldovan confectionery?

I tried to pick up on the Party of Communists, but it’s short notice and my contact with them hasn’t responded to my requests for another interview. That’s understandable, they’re busy with the second round of elections. I’ve been keeping an eye on Usatîi Renato, again I won’t have time in Balti to set up an official interview any members of his party, but it’ll be worthwhile to see the context of his victory. Nobody wins a 72% landslide without some serious political support.