Tatiana + Evelyn
1976 | Moscow, Russia | Age: 28 and 0 | via Austria and Italy
Evelyn: I was the little parcel on the way, but we don’t know for sure whether I was conceived in Russia or in Austria.
Tatiana: Probably Vienna. We had been too busy in Moscow to think about sex.
Evelyn: My mom tells me how difficult it was. You were 28? My older brother was 3 years old.
Tatiana: Yes, it was difficult. But we were young. We looked at it as an adventure. My grandmother encouraged me to go and see the world! We had a few suitcases, and that was it. When we came to Vienna, the first thing we did was go out and buy a pot. We hadn’t known what to bring, and couldn’t bring much anyway because the fees were astronomical. And so I have almost nothing left of what little we brought with us. I was allowed to take the ring my mother had given me when I turned 16. That was it.
Evelyn: My mother’s parents stayed in Moscow. They didn’t even want to try to emigrate. She thought she would never see her family again. I can’t even imagine.
Tatiana: This was 1976, but we weren’t refuseniks. Somehow we were allowed out. My in-laws were supposed to come with us, but my father-in-law had worked for the Russian Chamber of Commerce as an architect and had traveled all over the world for international expos. So for a year he was stuck in Vienna because America refused him entry on the basis of his affiliation with the Communist Party through his work, despite the fact that he wasn’t a communist. Evelyn was born in New York, and they were finally able to join us when she was about 8 months old.