Ukrainian athlete, 2019 world aerobatics champion, founder of Aerotim
Interview: Ljubov Dzuzhynska
Photo: Danil Privet
What’s it like to be you?
Could you be more precise?
I actually don’t talk much. Silence is more of my thing.
We ask for you to maybe try as we love long reads.
Well, alright. I often find myself in situations … My friends live in this area too, close to the cathedral, and so I sometimes intersect with them in these “cinematic scenes“: The traffic light comes on, it’s red already. I’m riding a motorcycle and I need to go, but I realize that the car is already driving. And since it’s a pedestrian crossing, I jump off, drag it as a pedestrian and the driver now must let me cross. And so he does. And then I understand that I have a witness – my best friend, who also came from Crimea. And he laughs, looks at me, and says: “Timur, I already knew that it was you from afar.”
Probably, a year ago I would have said that a destructive behavior prevails in me – it was somewhere on “step on the gas“, somewhere on the verge. But today I am a different person, and I focus on creation or on reading something. Even though I have read two books in my life.
“The Lord of the Rings” and “The Art of War“.
That’s quite the spread.
Well, I read The Lord of the Rings when I was 12 years old while I was in the hospital with appendicitis. It was the only book I had there, and it was in the village. And “The Art of War” part happened later. I am from a family of two philosophers, so my entire home was full of books. Books on the shelves, in the closets, even in the bathroom probably. And so as a kid when I used to fall asleep and wake – I still remember all those covers – Borges, Hesse, and also I remember all the discussions my parents used to have. So I didn’t really have to read. And my father said that books are read by those who cannot think for themselves. I took this as a motto. Therefore, what describes me is my “ultimate experience”. My own. I practically don’t listen to people and what they have to say about life. I don’t absorb other people’s expressions. And this “ultimate experience” characterizes me.
So what was that turning point when you decided to shift towards a creative path in life?
I think it was an evolution. I mean, it’s an evolutionary process. Like when you overate and ate a lot and just felt some sort of animal cravings and then you suddenly evolved and began to eat more carefully. I didn’t do anything on purpose, so in this case, it’s a similar process. Still, on a whim, I manage to do something atypical, because of the “community“, because of the friends who tease you. But more and more I discover within myself a desire to sometimes leave and play and create something on the piano somewhere in the garage.
And what’s it like trying to balance these two sides of you?
I think that
a lot of things are not what they seem . And the fact that for someone being “on the edge” is actually a rather thorny path from something simple to something complex, and from complex to super-complex.
So at the point when you do something super complicated, something “edgy”, you get these subtle sensations. And when those sensations arise, art begins. There is essentially not a single moment when you do not comprehend what is happening. Because when you do not understand what is happening in terms of a stunt or a particular element – that’s being on the edge means. A recklessness. Yet when you manage it more or less manage it, when you respect the elements, then it is more likely associated with something exciting rather than extreme.
When did you first fall in love with sports? What attracted you?
I’ve been rock climbing since the age of six, and climbing for me is correlated with aerobatic sports. So, retrospectively returning to me being at the age of 11, I was at the competition at Tash-Dzhargan near Simferopol. They were shooting a film, and a military painted Yak-52 (sports plane, national) was doing some aerobatic maneuvers, which were unfamiliar to me, but so magical. I was sitting on the edge of a cliff, and somewhere on another cliff, there was a camera, above which the plane dived. Back then I thought a person of magic was sitting inside that plane. A superhero. It made me so excited and I thought to myself, “who is this person?” Today I know who this person was. Moreover, I know that everything he did was “nothing special.” But back then it stuck in a child’s head and it seemed as something extraordinary. And, again, what characterizes me today is the desire to do something more, something where you are entirely all in. Dream big.
If you are getting involved with something and you don’t need to force yourself to fully dive into the process then it ends up inspiring you every day, and if that’s not the case, then why get involved at all?
If you were a sport then what kind? And how would your choice reflect your being?
The first thing that came to mind – probably archery.
I don’t know, I thought about lines, about speed, about the endpoint of the process.
If you were an airplane, which one?
Definitely a sports plane. Today I would be an MX plane. Today I would be an airplane made specifically for me: with the right weight distribution so that my shoulders would fit there nicely so that I wouldn’t get stuck in the process when I would straighten the belt. It would be energetically powerfully equipped, sharp in control, focal, and beautiful in its appearance. And outwardly beautiful not only because of how it was created, but because nature and aerodynamics oblige such things as sports boats, sailing catamarans, or gliders to be elegant. They all have beautiful long lines, and elegance is associated with such straight lines.
They’re practical because of their aerodynamics.
Although sports jets are powered and less dependent on the elements, nature also forced them to have elegant lines and symmetrical wing forms. And it’s beautiful.
What is your perception of beauty?
Beauty in general.
I think about beauty in terms of dynamics. It’s not a static picture, because a picture can deceive a person, well, for about 5 minutes, and then you see behind the curtain. But everything that is in dynamics, in motion, is beautiful … By “beautiful” I mean things around the symmetrical lines – their sharpness, sophistication, consistency in terms of color. For me, beauty is associated with something softened and subtle. If it’s a shirt, then, most likely, it is a linen shirt. It’s not bright, but rather a noble color. The same goes for sound, it shouldn’t be loud. The colors should be gray, desaturated. Again, I must return to the topic of nature, because in the air we still have the opportunity to enjoy freedom amid nature. It’s pristine because no alterations have occurred there. And every sunset, sunrise, cloudiness – it is always associated with beauty. It is unique and fulfilled.
What was the most beautiful thing you’ve ever experienced or seen in your life?
This year in May, I was invited to the first shoot in my life, dedicated to a brand of women’s jewelry. It turned out that it was devoted to jewelry for women’s ankles. It was the first shoot in my life, and the models were incredibly beautiful.
And once I made landings in the Scottish mountains, on atolls on a special plane that could allow it. Together with a German pilot, we landed on the beach – an absolutely wild beach without a single living soul (the Isle of Mull). We saw deers that weren’t afraid of planes because they’ve never seen them before. We bound the plane and wandered in the sand. The time was around sunset. The further atolls began to go underwater little by little as the tide began to flood the area. And I knew that we needed to fly away fast as we needed this beach to do so, and everything was quickly heating up. I felt a crazy warm breeze from the setting sun. The color and lighting of that view is indescribable. And it probably wouldn’t be so beautiful if you could press pause at that moment. Therefore, that thing that I spoke about just a couple of minutes earlier, was exactly the case in that experience. You’re just about to get on a plane and take off, and you don’t want to – you want to linger and taste this feeling. It was probably one of the most beautiful moments for me. It had everything in it- freedom, inner experiences, and a person with whom I could share it with. Perhaps this also characterizes my values.
When do you feel truly alive?
Every time I board a plane, I feel truly alive – that’s half the formula. And the other half is who I share it with. Either it’s an instructor who stands on the ground and tells me the lines to follow. Whether this is a person for whom I have feelings of love, even in its platonic form, the fact that this person exists is enough. So moments like that. Or the moments when I listen to music. And it’s even better if I do something to obtain it – a synergy of sports, sensations, music.
How would you comment on the saying “Nothing ruins the goal like a direct hit”?
I am a romantic, and I do not live by goals – rather by dreams.
And in the world of sports?
And in the sports world too. I set my goals as a joke. I fill out a questionnaire for the World Championship, and there you need to indicate your ‘goal’. People write things like, “I want to be in the top ten,” or “I want to be in the top five,” or “to have fun.” I write sarcastically that, of course, I’m going exclusively for gold and stuff like that. This is half sarcastic, but when it comes to performance, to exercise, I take pride in the fact that I perform better in competition than in training. This is my thing – I get inspired by the presence of people, a large number of judges. And I will comment on this phrase like this –
if a target is static, then it can be devaluad with a direct hit. But if your goal resides in reaching a new state, then it won’t have an endpoint. And then you will not in any way obscure the goal with hitting the target or with achieving the goal itself.
Nicely put. Who is or was your biggest teacher in life?
I watched movies. I didn’t have a life mentor or an advisor of sorts.
What film reality would you like to explore? You don’t have to stay there forever, just for the time being.
‘Catch Me If You Can‘, I like ‘The Thomas Crown Affair’, a sequel which is a more modern film, because there is a film from 1960. It’s very close to real-life so I probably wouldn’t want to be in it. But the modern version has a set of beautiful clichés, with a thrill, it’s complex, both the female and male are strong. It’s not a gender film, where only the male role prevails. In general, I love cinema. And, of course, I would also like to be in Nolan’s film ‘Inception‘. It’s super! I am attached to the topic of time travel and dreams.
If you could travel in time, to the future or the past, where would you go and why?
Somewhere in Biggin Hill. If they gave me a Spitfire, I would gladly take part in combat. It would be nice if I was given a couple of lives. Because you could quickly screw up being whoever you are there. I have studied a lot of military battles, and I can relate a little, and sometimes imagine what it felt like for those people. Of course, I would like to go there. And not in order to become a war hero, but simply to have a taste of it all.
The future does not beckon you?
It inevitably approaches. I kept thinking the entire time that I was still 20 years old. Until recently, it always seemed 20. People with whom I collaborated always communicated with me in a bit of a fatherly way. But today I understand that the future is approaching.
What question would you like to know the answer to?
A philosophical question or any question? Probably something like: “Is the world measurable?”
Do you mean that in a philosophical manner or literally?
It’s just something that I thought about recently – you can’t measure the world, can you?
It depends on what you mean by the ‘world’.
Well yes. I’ll still think about what question I would like to know the answer to.
Which of the existing historical figures or characters in films, books, or cartoons would you like to meet in person?
I would meet with Gaddafi if he were alive.
What would you ask him?
“How are you?“. I once studied his biography. He had military and political successes at a very young age. In general, he was a cheerful guy. Then, of course, it all went downhill. But it would be interesting nevertheless. From film characters – I like Danny Ocean. Remember ‘Ocean’s Eleven’? I would meet up with all of them. They have this eternal fire and it’s a great cast. There is something about them, an infinite belief in yourself and in the possibilities of people. Also with a big “fun factor” – it all looks like a lot of fun. Even their bad habits seem charming.
Could you share some fucked up or awkward stories from your career in aerobatics?
Let me give it some thought…
We have no censorship, so…
Let me start with something harmless. When I was just training and still studying for a private pilot’s license, I tried to quickly master all of it, and drove to the airfield quickly, in a fast car. And I trained back then, did some weightlifting. So I felt hot in the car. And I drove 240 km/h, even more. So I decided to take off my leather jacket, while driving after training. And while I was taking off my jacket, I stuck my shoulders in it, at a high speed, shifting through cars. I was actually stuck, no kidding. I simply could not move – and could no longer control my hands, I steered with my knee, smoothly pressed the brake. I had to stop to get out of my own jacket.
Regarding airplanes, it’s a bit of a shameful story for me. We reconstructed the smoke system with a partner because the one that came from the factory did not work as we wanted it to. And I tested it in Bila Tserkva, and while getting back I saw that something sparked under the hood. I could hardly see it in the process so I continued to steer. The smell was of something burning. I drove to the parking lot, and I understood that I was on fire, the plane was burning a little, somewhere in the exhaust pipe area. Everything is blazing, people were running around the plan. Well, what I did was I stopped the engine, jumped out of the plane, ran for the fire extinguisher. And my instructor jumped into it and quickly launched it to blow off the flame with a lot of gas. I was so ashamed that I got off the plane. In fact, I just didn’t know what to do in such cases. But I carried this shame of “leaving the board” all day. You know, I didn’t have such fuckups with airplanes. Well, except for the loss of radio communication and misunderstanding of the partner when we were engaged in a couple of flights. And I still can’t remember something specific on the matter.
The funniest story in our aerobatic world is when a strong athlete, a Kharkiv citizen, flies to the competition. Usually, aerobatics do not fly a lot on routes, for them, it feels like a test – radio exchange, a lot of fuss. Otherwise, you just board the plane and don’t even bother about the weather or anything else. You fly for 20 minutes and then you are back on the ground. So when you fly a flight in a single plane, this is a test for many. And so he flies from Kharkiv to Odesa, and by radio exchange, the dispatcher asks him: “Do you have Gamet (this is a weather forecast) on onboard. He says: “No, I have a single-seat plane.” It’s very funny, especially for aviators.
Yes, it’s a weather forecast thing that shows you data on special circumstances, thunderstorms, and so on. And you are often asked this question. That is if you fly on routes, then, of course, you answer: “Yes, I have a Gamet on board.”
I had such cases when I wanted to drink, for example, and I had water in the back (there is no trunk in a sports plane, but there is a small compartment in the back where you can throw a small bag with some small things).
Is it a one-seater?
Today I train on a two-seater plane, but when I perform or train, I usually change the lantern (this is glass), and it ends where one place ends. The gliding is better. And onlookers lose interest in flying. Well, in general, we can fly together. So anyway, here I am flying with a friend who has just begun to learn to fly, he is from Poltava. And I’m terribly thirsty. And although there is room for only my shoulders, I think: “Okay.” I say: “I will now unfasten my seatbelt, so you take the helm, and I will try to turn 180 inside the plane and get water.” I unfasten smoothly, trying to unwind somehow. At the same time, of course, I press the pedal, then I touch the gas, then some kind of toggle switch, then I touch the handle – and he is struggling with all of this, and quite successfully. As a result, I turn around, take out the water (it wasn’t just water, but that’s another story). Well, I somehow managed to turn back around, which is also important.
Then there was this one time when I realized that I could not make it before sunset. Although I also performed night flights on a twin-engine aircraft, I received ratings from a commercial pilot, like Multi Engine and so on. But, nevertheless, on a sports plane, you must descend 15 minutes before sunset – this is legally required. Although even 15 minutes after the sunset you can still see vividly, that is, it’s not a problem to land. But I realized on the way that my calculation was not good because of the strong wind. And I thought to myself: “Okay if I go to Boryspil now, they are going to investigate why I didn’t land on time“. So in the plane, I rang up the owner of the airfield in Devichki, to turn on the illumination of his strip. And in case I realize that I still cannot reach Kyiv, then I will land at his airfield. So he turned on the landing strip for me for half an hour, just in the required passage. It was very difficult to get in touch with him because the connection was disrupted and it was very noisy. As a result, I flew over his airfield and I saw that the lights were actually on. I knew that I could make it to my home airfield. So, flying over Kyiv, I see that all sorts of “Sushiya” are lit up, and the entire city is glowing. I landed with no further problems.
Of course, I broke a lot of rules in air sports, and the “aviation world”. But in truth, I have always been vigilant, always calculating, I’ve always analyzed someone else’s experience too. But the main focus was on my own mistakes which I’m still experiencing because, well, there is no limit to perfection. You have to know your way around the rudders, understand how aggressive you are and how physically enduring. But you also have to keep in mind meteorology, air law, and many other things. And there is always something new occurring- new phenomena are studied when they emerge. With thunderstorms, you can expect anything.
But in terms of a “fuck-up” story. There are no toilets in sports planes, and it’s understandable – no one serves drinks there and no one offers you milk after take off. We flew to Podgirya from Kyiv, and along the way, there were a lot of storm fronts. And we bypassed them, which was scary. You come up – you are shaking, it is raining, then hail hits you, it’s winter and is very cold. I had a friend with me who had nothing to do with airplanes. And he piloted. Well, I made him pilot. And I was looking for alternative airfields in case we could not make it to our destination. And so there is not a lot of fuel left, and we flew longer because there was a strong headwind. So if initially, we planned to get there in an hour and a half, we were already flying for two and a half. And before that, we drank. I understand that I can barely hold on so as not to “wet my pants.” And my partner was in the same situation. Lots of jokes I can make on the topic. And you’re sitting on a parachute, so you simply do not have the right to pee yourself, because then you have to repack the whole thing, and not just wash it.
And so we land, the flight director comes up to us and says: “You have to sign.” And we just jump out of the plane, run to the lavatory, someone makes it, someone doesn’t. Since then, I know that you need to grab an empty bottle with you, and preferably with a wide opening, if you know what I mean.
Probably difficult to be a woman in aviation.
There are not that many women in sports aviation. But, they say, women are more patient and have better endurance.
What about funny stories from your childhood?
Well, I have a funny story, but it’s a little long. Even though I was mischievous in school, I still somehow managed to study well. I never even tried, but it just worked out that way. My grandmother is an academic physicist so I had no right of getting bad grades in physics. So for showing good results in some disciplines, both intellectual and sports-related, I once participated in the annual contest “Student of the Year“. My friends were, of course, shocked, and came to support me, and they’re the type of people who never care about such events. I was greeted with a standing ovation simply because I appeared on stage. Back then I had long hair and I already played electric guitar in a band. It was great because we were like rockstars, only in the village. So one of the contests went like this: you have a set of numbers and everyone stood in a row. The host asks a question, and just like in tests, you have to show a number that you think is the correct answer, and if it’s the right answer then you have to take a step forward. So whoever raised more correct numbers took more steps. So whoever takes the lead is a winner and those who participated could not see what number each participant raised or so was the rule. But you actually could, so if the majority raised 2, then if you raise a 2, everything will probably be ok. And I, too, took advantage of that. So at one point, I see that everyone is raising one, no one knows the answer to the question, everyone looks at each other in dismay. And I raise one too, and they tell me: “Timur Fatkullin, take a step forward. All the contestants answered the same and you are the only one who stood your ground and answered correctly”. I was so embarrassed to take that step, everyone was looking at me. I thought: “Well since they told me to take the step, I will.” And I take that step, and I think to myself, what’s wrong? I raised one, like everyone else. And then I realized that a 2 was stuck to 1. That story really defines me, because I’ve been very lucky in my life. At certain times I’ve been extremely lucky.
So you ended up with the correct answer? That’s cool! What fascinates you outside of your work and outside of sports?
Recently I was completely swept away by one woman.
What does love mean to you?
I am very conservative in this regard. I see women and men in an old-fashioned way. Partly because of the upbringing of my grandmother, partly because I danced Argentine tango for 5 years and listened to a lot of orchestras of the Golden Age, the 40s, and the 50s. And, of course, I delved into those names, what they sang about, what they played about. And it brought up this classic vision in me, where everything else, in fact, is in the name of love.
Why do anything if love is not involved?
For me, this is something grand. I have the skill of being with a person entirely. I am nowhere else – at those moments my phone never rings, I have no notifications that could distract me from the context of being present. And in today’s world, only a few people could share this with me. In today’s digital world, I still consider myself an analog guy. This carries some difficulties, but if suddenly there is someone with whom you can share this, it has a special charm to it. In this regard, there are not that many established people.
What modern trend bothers you or even frightens you?
You know, my friend started Instagram about 5-6 months ago, well, he posts to my Instagram, because he was shocked that I didn’t have it. And we met at a gas station. All this emptiness that is happening there (although I read some selected stuff that he sends me) – it confuses me, I do not fully understand it. It’s a constant stimulation but there is nothing deep about it. And, if there is, then you have to scroll even further for it to stimulate you again. It makes me sad. I was very disappointed by the story of how one very experienced, elderly pilot, who had been developing an airfield in Bila Tserkva since the fifties, began to air dive over children and they were playing some game on the phone on the bridge, and they did not even look up. He made a trick above them of some kind. It’s all very strange to me. What fascinated them so much on the phone that they missed real-life surrounding them? It’s a trend “in the wrong direction” – I am afraid of it.
Today, involuntarily, many bring work to the table, and with digital hygiene, things become difficult, because in your pocket you carry a device through which you can always get to a person.
How do you foresee the future?
Well, of course, I’m waiting for progress in aviation, because, as you can see, no new “moonstone” has been invented, and the technologies we fly on are still from the fifties. The plane on which we fly and that is considered to be on “top” of the list in the world today – the glider has not changed at all, it was invented in the seventies. The technology of those years is still used today. Yes, Avionics has made a little step forward in terms of everything related to navigation and electronics. But other than that there is nothing new, nothing that could help you effortlessly fly through the landscape inside the city (remember “The Fifth Element“) – nothing like that. But since we are at the forefront of aviation, I think that we will be the first to master this and teach other people. Because meteorology isn’t going anywhere. Let the computer think for you whether to allow you to take off or not, but I hope that all these skills that we have acquired (Ukraine is an aviation state) will be useful. And this will become a new round. And the future overall, it seems to me, will become more digital.
Do you think it’s a good thing or a bad thing?
I don’t like it. And whether it’s good or bad – everyone decides for themselves.
What piece of advice would you give to humanity?
Carpe diem – live in the moment!
What was the last film you’ve seen that impressed you?
“Platform”. It’s a Spanish film on Netflix. It did not impress me with some super-deep idea. The idea is very comprehensible and straightforward. It has a strong metaphor. Despite the violence that might have alienated many people from watching the film, it did not bother me. I was impressed by how well each personality was portrayed – not trivial, not prosaic, and very close to real life. They’ve reflected the modern so well, especially when the main characters said: “How? Don’t you have a symbol?” And they choose Panna-Kota as a symbol. “You have to carry some kind of symbol” – this reflects the modern world so strongly.
So it really impressed me.
There’s this film by Yorgos Lanthimos ‘The Lobster’, where single people are meant to find a partner in 45 days, and if they don’t, they must choose an animal to transform into. What animal would you choose?
It’s hard to say.
You know what, we could talk about inspiration here. I am definitely a representative of a cell, maybe a small one, which experiences a lot of inspiration and motivation in seeking something new.
Earlier, being all over the place, I felt that I was an amateur in many areas because I was interested in art, I was very interested in music and all kinds of sports. And I understand that I don’t have time to immerse myself in all of these things completely, so, accordingly, I am an amateur. But over time, devoting a little bit to each of these areas, not on purpose, on a whim, it turned out that even being an amateur, you can at some point begin to communicate with another person without words. Through music or dance. And this is very inspiring.
Flying inspires – it’s something big, it’s a baggage of humanity of sorts, carried through history. The skills that you received, all the experience of the different times that you received in that form. This is what I would like to wish a loved one, and surely any person. For me, this is still an area that can impress a child – and this is a priority, probably, to let him know that there is something big, magnificent, something special that he can become a part of. And this is not necessarily materialistic, I am not speaking in the context of “You need an airplane”, but in the context of “Have the skill of piloting, fly, be it”. Therefore, for me, it is also some kind of immaterial process.
One time we had a tour at the airfield for a nearby school from the village. I had a German pilot visiting that same day who is famous in sports. We were literally given 5 minutes due to the fact that the military flew in to fly with him. And the kids were so delighted. That experience consisted of both a foreign famous athlete, and a local athlete, and they saw that these people were young, and their eyes were glowing. The atmosphere was incredibly electrified. I even have goosebumps talking about it. At such moments you understand that it would be a sin not to do this. And it’s not that, for example, the boys or girls who were there will become pilots – no. It means that maybe the father will become a better father, the child will be a better athlete, or he or she will do better in school because they saw something as thrilling as that. It’s a way to give someone the motivation to do something. They may believe that they can reach their dreams and make them happen. I feel great in moments like that.
Do you experience emotional burnouts?
No, I haven’t had that yet. I’m going through a difficult period. You found me on the day when summer is over and I need to enter a new fall era full of matters that I have to attend to and full of other distress. During the summer I allowed myself to change my lifestyle, as if lengthening my time, and now I understand that a lot of things have accumulated. It’s like having summer homework that you left until the last day. So today is not an easy day for me, but like everything new, it intrigues me.
What question would you like to be asked in an interview and what would you answer?
Why did you ask me to do this interview?
I saw a video from Vlad Ivanenko. I interviewed him before the quarantine. I was impressed by the video, started reading about you, and decided, why not? We have a lot of interviews with people from entirely different fields.
I’ve noticed. You also have a lot of musicians.
They are easier to reach and contact. We’ve had an interview with a McLaren designer – he is Ukrainian. Also an interview with Denis Zhadanov (Readdle) and the Lieberman Brothers (Snapchat) from the IT industry. We’ve also had a conversation recently with an art director of Facebook and Instagram, also artists Xue Jiye, Horacio Quiroz. Or Lubomyr Melnyk – the fastest pianist in the world. We just like to be inspired by the people around us and present them as they are. It’s just that when I worked for Bob Basset and the brand had interviews, they were always so dull and all the same. The questions were cliche and boring. And I’ve always had so many things that I wanted to ask.
Well, ask me what my life motto is.
What’s your life motto?
Does it change at all?
This has been my motto for a while now.
Do you think it will ever change?
I hope not. Maybe it will evolve into something new, something more complex. But for now, it’s simple.
I prefer to go in for sports, business, without sacrificing something else. After all, sometimes it seems that there isn’t enough time, but the secret is – there isn’t any time.
That’s an entirely different way of perceiving things. That’s been with me for the past 10 years or so. Because from the age of 14 I already understood the alignments in general, I left the village quite early for the city, then I lived in the States, Latin America. And even how I learned languages or some newly acquired skills – it all happened not through some effort or “self-digging“, I didn’t make myself to do something but I simply found ways how to easily make it happen … Honestly, it’s a thrill!
What was your favorite childhood fairytale?
I remember how my father read to me Tolkien’s ‘The Hobbit’. It was great. Perhaps it’s not exactly a fairy tale. And I don’t remember anything else. I hung out outdoors a lot, so I hardly heard any fairy tales.
A bright future and retirement.
As they say: “The end is visible in a straight pipe”. But my pipe is not straight, so who the hell knows!
Translation: Elena Savlokhova