Monday, July 12, 2021
The hot water was turned off for several days
Russia brings cold showers to its citizens
Old pipes from Soviet times have to be serviced annually. For many Russians, this means one thing above all: showering with cold for several days. To avoid the cold, Russian citizens are getting invented.
In winter, the icy cold in Russia comes from outside, in the summer from your own pipe. For at least a few days. Then municipal utilities across the country temporarily turn off the hot water for most of their citizens. Maintenance work on the pipes, mostly pre-Soviet, is the official reason. Many Russians only need to believe that the weather will cooperate and that the spontaneous rainy ice age will at least pass a pleasant refreshment.
But even then, the excitement is often more than limited. Some people in East Germany may still remember such anomalies from the GDR period – but they have been there for a long time. After all, the power of nuclear and raw materials in Russia has not yet been brought under control, much to the annoyance of many in the world’s largest country.
“This is the third decade of the 21st century. Hot water in Russia is still turned off in the summer,” a user complained on an online portal. Another complains that his skin is affected because the soap does not foam under cold water. Municipal companies from Kaliningrad to the Far East of Kamchatka continue to be accused of wanting to save thermal energy primarily with summer operations. Others take the situation for granted. With the quality mantra of “one grief shared is half grief”, the Russian internet is full of claims and pictures about the cold rains of the summer months. When you have warm water all year round you mean one thing, not the real Russian. Some may learn something from the situation. A cold shower is good for circulation, it is said in some forums.
On the other hand, foreign tourists are more likely to act irritably because many Russian hotels do not even have water heaters. That’s why travelers repeatedly criticize a cold surprise in the bathroom in their reviews. In the Baltic metropolis of St. Petersburg, thousands of fans recently traveled to the European Football Championship, wanting to avoid harmful waves – and disrupting the cold water season between early June and mid-July.
Some of the lucky ones are also nice compared to the gas boilers in the apartment. It means to everyone else: Close your eyes and go – right? Not so much because demand makes innovation. Since many of the 146 million people of the vast empire are not fans enough to tremble in the rain, they have created their own bathroom rituals for this special time of year. Separate districts in the big cities are affected by delays from mid-May, so many people there go to Mom, Dad or the gym. Shower parties with friends are also popular and thematically repeated in the films – despite the dramatically higher corona infection rates, which can be very dangerous. Last year, for example, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sofian postponed the start of the cold water season until the bad phase was over.
According to studies, heating water in a stove or kettle is especially popular and is compatible with infection. But it can also be very creative: tap into your washing machine to get rare hot water, an online portal advises its readers: start a hot wash cycle and put waste water in the bathtub – done. If all of this is too expensive for you, a Siberian online portal recommends a dry shampoo or – if you can afford it – make frequent visits to the hairdresser. And other parts of the body? No problem: “People invented wet wipes so that you could destroy everything in the world – including your body.”