Special Capital Region of Jakarta, Indonesia

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  • Fluent in English, Russian; learning Hebrew (modern), Indonesian, Spanish
  • 37, Male
  • Member since 2004
  • Random.
  • Life is the best teacher?
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About Me


Having fun, both of the sober and inebriated varieties. Exploring whatever is left on this planet to explore. Fruitlessly attempting to produce the ultimate masterpiece in whatever art i'm skilled enough to try. Analysing anything that couldn't run away in time. Shuffling countries.


Eh... Cogito, ergo sum?
This "all about you" thing is a bit pretentious, don't you think?
Well, it all started when i was 18 y.o., awfully romantic, hooked on Kipling, Gumilyov (a similar Russian writer) and both Roerichs, and hopelessly incompatible with the existing environment. It was only logical that i dumped it all and took off to India. I will omit the details - how i found the real India instead of my wild dreams, what followed, what sprang up from nowhere and what came out of it, how to make plate armor from Himalayan snow and where to get the visa to cross the few borders that actually exist. The final result is a perpetual vagabond, a travel photographer/writer with a tendency to stick his Ockham's razor into every little crack and attempt to twist a few stones out of some foundation, regardless of the structure supported by it. And even though i have murdered most of my romantic dreams the most brutal way - by making them come true, forcing them into this inhospitable reality - i'm still hooked on good books.


There are no such thing as ugly women. Sometimes there's simply not enough vodka.
In the beginning there was a word. It's a verb, and it still reverberates. Can't quote it here though - it's really obscene...
If it works, don't touch anything, don't change anything.

Why I’m on Couchsurfing


Pop up on CS meetings every so often holding a bottle of pure medical alcohol spiked with Indian spices and get everyone shitfaced. I'm also usually the one pulling them from under the table and stuffing them into a cab.


Quite a few, ranging from enriching to hilarious.


Photography - more than just an interest, i'm a pro; hiking, mountaineering, white-water rafting; writing, intellectual games of all sorts and whatnot...

Music, Movies, and Books

With music it's quite simple: bards ("avtorskaya pesnya") - a peculiar Russian genre not that different maybe from the tradition of ancient Celtic bards; classics, particularly 18 and 19 century Italians; Chinese, Japanese, Celtic and Gypsy folk (real ethnic stuff, not "new age"), as well as other world music, provided it doesn't sound like the screams of an agonizing tomcat; selected pieces of Russian acoustic rock, Japanese enka and French chanson.
Books - too many favorite authors to list; to name a few - say, T. Pratchett, T. Wilder, M. Kundera, J. Cortasar etc.
Movies - nothing beats Chinese mystic/magic stories, but i'd watch anything, as long as i have time to kill - which doesn't happen too often...

One Amazing Thing I’ve Done

They happen, say, once in 4 days - at least. No way i can choose one. OK, if you're really desperate for one - take, say, swimming through a semi-submerged cave to see an underground waterfall in Guatemala (and i swim like a cracked teapot). Add paragliding, Himalayan 6000-ers and some of the most unusual people in the world to taste. Bring to boil. Escape before it's too late.

Teach, Learn, Share

Well, i can help you if you're stuck with one of the following questions:
Which way up to hold my camera? Advanced level: how do you photograph a butterfly in flight?
Why there's no such thing as "being lost"?
What's missing in my life if my career seems perfect?
How do you travel 9 or 10 months per year? Where do you get money and what about obligations?
Is drinking a liter of vodka really bad for one's health? Why isn't it? (practical session required)
How do people just go ahead and find themselves?
How do you walk 50 km in a day and don't get exhausted?
To be or not to be?
Where can i urgently get some pure medical alcohol? (in Russia only - in other countries i can still provide a reasonably expert advice on local booze)
And so on...

What I Can Share with Hosts

A bottle of 40% strong alcohol. Then another one. A lot of unwanted information. A huge database on traveling in Indochina. A crash course of photography. An inexhaustible supply of philosophic jokes. My collections of books and music (all digital). My logorrhea.

Countries I’ve Visited

Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Czech Republic, Djibouti, Egypt, Ethiopia, Germany, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Malaysia, Mexico, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Panama, Poland, Romania, Tajikistan, Thailand, Timor-Leste (East Timor), Turkey, Uzbekistan, Viet Nam, Yemen

Countries I’ve Lived In

Israel, Kazakhstan, Philippines, Thailand, Uzbekistan

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