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A Postcard From Moscow

Burdened with shopping, Magda boarded the bus and eased carefully into a window seat. She ran over her menu of tasks. Collect her husband's medicine from the pharmacy, change his bed, prepare borsch for lunch, then clean the house.

Just as the bus started to move, a young woman appeared and tapped on the door. Magda caught her look of incomprehension as she watched the bus barge its way into the flow of traffic.

Fifty years ago this month, since I first arrived in this city, she thought.

'In those days all doors were open.'

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