It was a matter of pride for these men to turn up at the next day’s early meeting on an hour’s drunken sleep, call the wife and have a beer at lunch to steady the shakes.Of course, the best way to recover from an apocalyptic Russian hangover is to go the banya, or sauna.
Emma, a 28-year-old lawyer, went to Moscow on a six-month tenure, attracted, she said, by “the offer of an adventure”.
She was keen to escape what she describes as “the claustrophobia” of London and the small professional world she lived in. “There was a sense that you could get away with bad behaviour in Moscow.
This episode is definitely a breather, as we check in with about half of the women’s personal lives to find out who is failing as a girlfriend and a mother. We get a silly little excursion with Shereé and Porsha because Shereé is finally ready to install some doors in Chateau Shereé.
Porsha tells her, “Maybe you need a fabulous knob.” Porsha just has things fall out of her mouth that are absolutely ridiculous and adorable.
For whatever the allure of a chaotic and brutal city that fosters a feeling of nothing to lose, the expats usually do shuffle home to recover, their livers depleted, their emotional lives in tatters, their memories blurry and their fingers hovering over control/alt/delete.
This season, it seems like we’re getting two drama-filled episodes in a row and then one as a breather.The big firms book out ritzy private saunas in steamy pre-Revolutionary buildings tiled in green and gold, where white-coated staff bring you sliced apples, honey and a silver samovar for tea.It is accepted that prostitutes and vodka will be included. Somebody phoned me up only last week and said: “Remember Dima?This is not life, this is Second Life, one in which our Moscow avatars can date seedy gangsters (yes, I plead guilty), drink ’til we’re sick night after night (yes, guilty) and then weep our Russian souls out at the transience of it all (also guilty).That is perhaps why Deidre chose to write a “fictionalised” account of it all on the internet; as someone who has set three novels in Moscow, I am dubious about anybody who claims, as Deidre Dare has done, that their work is fictional, especially when it features a heroine of roughly the same age, background and behavioural patterns of the author.New Yorker Deidre Dare, 45, was sacked from her lucrative legal job in Moscow for “gross misconduct” after writing an erotic internet novel, Expat, while on secondment in the Russian capital, eschewing her real name, Deidre Clark, for a racier nom de plume.