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My Short Escape to St Petersburg

"It is as life does, but consist of all these small moments."

Everyone has something going on in their life. Whether it be academically, socially or mentally. For me, school can get tough. Everyone has their own coping mechanisms, I often listen to music, sketch, write or sleep when I get tired (of everything). However as much as I enjoy and relax in these moments, I always crave another healthier mechanism.

Recently, my family has been going on short trips almost every alternate weekend with my friend's family. After every trip I realise that getting out, socialising and looking at new places helps so much more. Last weekend, we visited St Petersburg. It is the second-largest city in Russia. It was the imperial capital for 2 centuries and is now the unofficial cultural capital of the country due to it's mass collection of heritage and art. It was founded by Peter the Great who was the Tsar at the time on 1703.

We visited several churches, cathedrals, palaces and art museums during our stay. The 'Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood', was one of the excursions that particularly left a mark on me. The interesting name is derived from something quite literal. On March 13, 1881, as Alexander II's carriage passed along the embankment, a grenade was thrown by an anarchist group exploded. The tsar was unhurt and got out of the carriage to check up on the civilians who were hurt. An alliance took the chance to throw another bomb right at his feet, mortally wounding the tsar. The Emperor, bleeding heavily, was taken back to the Winter Palace, where he died a few hours later. I was moved by the fact that the people immediately built a temporary shrine on the place where he last stood during the attack. They planned on making a permanent shrine on the place where the whole incident took place in memory of the Tsar. The official site was constructed after 2 years by the late Emperor's son. The royal family funded it and the church is breathtakingly beautiful. What caught my eye were the red flowers and stones on the late Emperor's 'grave'. I briefly compared the vibrant redness of the flowers and pinkness of the stones, to the Emperor's shed blood. It was a sad moment however, it signifies the love of so many people for one person.

The trip made me think of a lot of things. Life is short, thus it is important to cherish all the little things. The problem is that you wouldn't be able to, if you don't know the value of it.

As we sat by the Newa River having dinner, I was missing the moment while living it. That is what living a moment is to me. Realising the value of a particular time and trying your best to relish it to its fullest. It is as life does, but consist of all these small moments.

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