Greetings all! I'm back in touch. Phones are bad, everyone's using them. It's quiet in the town. You can just hear some sort of gunfire, but it's a long way away. There are rumours in town that in Senaki and Zugidi the Russian miracle-workers said on tv that there's been no bombing, that there've been no deaths, that it's all disinformation. But we do know that they've knocked out radio stations in Tbilisi.
Column of tanks just went noisily down the street. Tengo says they're BMPs
It's weirdly frightening not knowing
Lord, let them not kill people
Don't know whether they were Russian tanks. Why is it so quiet? Why is there no cross fire?
people are in shock
we keep ringing one another
we don't understand anything
Looked out of the window. If it weren't for the dust on the main street you wouldn't know that armoured troop carriers have just been down it. Outside in the courtyard the guys are sitting round playing dominos. They're no longer even arguing. Someone's come on tv, no news. I think maybe that was the Georgians who just went by?
Don't worry, it's OK, we're all alive, the tanks went round the town and left again. I'm having to use dial-up from the house, which is why I haven't been writing.
All quiet right now. Let's see about tomorrow.
And I'm sorry I can't answer everyone personally, actually there seems to be lots of information around. The internet's bad, keeps breaking up. Huge thanks for being so supportive.
I wanted to post something lyrical, but didn't. It didn't seem right. I'm sure it's going to be alright, and I really will write. It's just as bad in Tbilisi. Keep cheerful, Tbilisi friends.
In Poti it's still quite quiet.
I don't know, what the coming day's going to bring, but in town everything's getting back to normal. We're not working yet, but the banks are open, and the port too. People have calmed down. Of course we'll get through, no one's panicking at the moment, but how long that'll last I don't know. They say that in Tbilisi people are in a real state, that it's just like it was in Poti a few days agao. People are trickling back into the town.
Well, is that it?
It's over, thank God!
People are returning to the town.
I do hope that we can get back to normal. Go back to how it was before the war.
My friend mouss's poem - Maria thanks for this!
Tell me, friends, doesn't all this crap give you the creeps? The cool guy who's got nothing to say about the war isn't cool any more - bye, sorry about that. Right, left, right left, it's the wedding of a bloody bitch. When we were kids they told us people were all brothers. Then we found out what the price of this brotherhood was - a piece of land. 15 sisters rip the earrings out of one another's ears. But where are the brothers, tell me that? Once, our hearts were aflame, but it's all been turned into heaps of money.
Pathos is catching, like gonorrhea, it's alive, and sticks onto you like a cockcroach. No, we've learned nothing over the centuries, just a dusting of wisdom. Some will end up on the black side, some on the white. The map is all scarred with lies. And do you remember how badly Mama wanted you and me to be friends?
Fellow Georgians, let's drink to Russia, to those chicken legs Bush sent by way of aid - it wouldn't be bad if we had some too. And I can't forget Mama begging us not to run over a red light!
People keep on shooting each another, scoring off one another, handing out platefuls of medals, garnished with sweetness. I watch the toothpaste seeping out while they hold the country by its short and curlies. All I've got to say to the puppet masters is this - you know where you can put your war!
Who am I anyway? Maria, Mashka, Pa's a Bashkir, Grandpa's from Ukraine, I buy off the Ossetian on the corner and cook it with my love from the Don.
So fine, we may no longer be brothers. They've divided up our world up into different floors. But on the ward, we lie next to one another, and there's enough room for us all.
9.27pm Little or Big Manifesto
Lord, we really do seem to be getting back to normal. Today I even went back to work. I never thought I'd be so keen to. I've been writing my blog ever since 19 March 2003. Then I used to write it in code, which my friend zvezdad taught me. It was just an ordinary girly blog. I used to write about my life, publish little stories, photos, poems for my own crowd. I suppose about 300 friends used to read it. I made some lovely friends online. It never occurred to me to be worried about privacy, not until a month or so ago. Then some people I know in Poti started taking these bits and pieces about my private life out of context. So I deleted it all. That was a bit sad, as there were interesting bits and pieces there, but I thought ‘let it all go', and pushed Delete. Then, when they started bombing the port I got onto the web from the telephone on the street, and wrote an entry there and then. Again, I did it for my friends.
Now on my cosy little blog I find out that there is no such person as Samira Kuznetsova. That I don't live in Poti at all, don't work in the port. That I'm some sort of invented person, or that my blog's been stolen. They say that the blog's just a piece of slander and propaganda. But what I really don't get is this - do they think I've been writing about politics all this time? Have I been rude about VVP (Putin), or Medvedev or Saakashvili? Have I been saying they've bombed us to smithereens? Have I written about anything that I've not seen with my own eyes? Have I been picking on people for their ethnicity? Setting people against one another? Have I tried to prove anything to anyone? This really hurts. People are saying they've just thrown three bombs, that Tskhinvali's been flattened, and there are you, just sitting there. They say if you'd just publish photos of bloody corpses, that would at least be something. Remember that saying about ‘bread and circuses'.
But I haven't the remotest desire to write about what hasn't happened. I can't do it, I've no desire to make things any worse than they are. I've only written about what's happened. About what I've seen myself. I haven't blamed anyone, drawn any conclusions, I haven't even said who's to blame. Because I'm not looking to blame anyone. I'm just in mourning. My blog's got a lot of attention. They keep quoting from it, republishing it and even translating it into other languages.
I don't need any PR. I've got nothing to be proud of. The blog's only interesting in relation to events in Georgia and Southern Ossetia. I'm not doing it on behalf of anyone. I don't want to prove anything to anyone.
I'm really grateful to everyone for their kind words, for the support, for paying attention. I'm really grateful to everyone, who's been thinking about us and what we've being going through. Not for my own sake, but because of what's been happening. I'm grateful for your ability to empathise. It's a unique quality. It reminds us that there's some point to it all. Just because I'm here, on this side of the border, it doesn't mean I feel guilty that I haven't died and that no one round me has died.
I just want to get back to the normal rhythm of my life, to my family, my loved one, my friends, my work, my animals, my world. I've got all kinds of friends. Each of them has got their own view of what's been happening. But the way I see it, that doesn't make them any better or worse.
The main thing to hope is that the nightmare's over. That it's going to sort itself out. I wish you all peace and understanding. Let's get together all the good people we can. Once more I want to say thank you. I'm not just saying it. I really am grateful. Be well. And pray that there's no more war.