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Mariupol Chronicles, Part 4

Updated: Mar 27, 2022

When you are scared, you have to do something. That’s what my friend, a therapist, advises. During an air raid, she cleans the floors in the entrance of her apartment building. She’s already washed it three times. Now there are sterile floors, and she has overcome her fear.

I put my thoughts down on paper during the shelling. Some kind of nonsense. Because nothing comes into my mind, and it turns out to be nonsense. I’m scared, I count the explosions, I listen to their echoes and write. From time to time, I look at the cat and the dog. They solve problems with fear radically.

Angie (the dog) falls asleep, and my cat lies on its back and just listens. His muzzle says, “Russian bombs, fly f**k yourselves.” I think my cat is a real patriot. He will tear up any occupier.

Many thanks to everyone who announces an air raid. Now we clearly know when to go out into the corridor between the apartments. And we calmly place chairs there, take out the dog and catch the partisan-cat. This red-haired bastard distracted me from a panic attack twice today.

The first time, I tried to hold him in my arms, and he hissed at me and wanted to grab my face with his paw. The second time was when he ran from me on the beds during the explosions, hid under the table and screamed like a fool when I, saving his cat life, desperately pulled his tail from under the sofa to push him into the safe place in the building.

The cat Yosef went berserk from such treatment and now treats me like a half-wit. He walks sideways, twitches his tail, looks at me from the far corner, and when I approach, jumps up on all fours and runs away with the roar of a lion.

We have no shelter in the house, and the closest ones are very far away. We just won’t have time to get there. Therefore, during the shelling, the corridor between apartments turns into Noah’s Ark. Together with people, a cat, two dogs, a guinea pig — a local favourite — and an impudent hamster sit out a terrible time. The hamster makes our cat and dog nervous just by looking at him.

There is absolute unity in the corridor, even among those neighbours who could not stand each other before. One hundred percent mutual understanding among those who boiled over that animals’ shit on the street. Now they don’t care about it. Our Ukrainian cats and dogs are just perfect.

The vile dwarf managed to unite everyone. He achieved amazing results in just four days. People felt like an absolutely united nation. Thank him for that. And for the rest — “Russian freak, go f**k yourself.” And everything will be Ukraine!

February 26 at 11:42 pm

Russian Text by Nadezhda Sukhorukova, translated into English by Ukrainianvancouver team – Mar 25, 2022

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