At the customs checkpoint I couldn't find my customs form from entry so the inspector wanted to know where it was. "I lost it" "Why?" "I don't know why. I lost it." "Why?" "I lost it." "Why?" So he decided to hand inspect my luggage. Once he got a whiff of my dirty socks, he asked "Do you have any caviar?" "No" "OK". And he let me go. The whole process lasted about10 minutes but the line for passport control was so long it took nearly an hour just to get to the waiting area for the bus to the plane. At least nobody asked me for my ID90 this time.
From the air Khabarovsk is all green and brown swirls with an occasional flash of blue-grey off the water. I wished I could get a picture of it but didn't get to my camera in time before we landed.
The plane is not nearly full but will probably fill up at Petropovlosk. I'm enjoying having some room. There's a woman sitting in the row behind me whom I met on the flight to Vladivostok from Seattle. Her daughter is working with environmental groups in the far east region. She confused me with the two guys from our flight who were going to Lake Baikal but when I mentioned Amursky Bay she remembered our mission. Apparently her daughter was aware of our expedition.
Out of Petropovlosk we flew over some more volcanoes spewing smoke and ash, and some really blue crater lakes. So now I can say I've seen the volcanoes and the Bering Sea. It kind of makes me want to come back to Russia next year and see Kamchatka in depth and detail.
I always want to see more of places I've been, which doesn't leave much time for new places on the agenda.