© Christian Frey, www.christianfrey.de

Selfmade-man Andrej

Despite adverse conditions Andrej and his wife Tanja made their way to the Siberian city Taischet. Ever since they hope for no more changes for the rest of their lives.

In the beginning there were two trucks, packed with bricks. In 1991, even before the ruble plummeted and most Russians lost their savings, Andrei and Tanya Ofizerov, just finished their studies and with the second child in her belly, bought these two loads of bricks. Perhaps their lives would have been different without this last-minute money rescue. Maybe they would have moved away like so many others. But they built a house and continued the life of their Belarusian ancestors who had moved to Siberia a century ago.

Both of them do not like to be reminded of the Soviet Union. Several of Tanja’s ancestors were shot in 1937. Her grandfather merely for being a priest. She learned about it in 1994, her grandmother was afraid to tell her children about it until the end.

Andrej rants about the egalitarianism of the Soviet system, in which not those who showed initiative were rewarded, but those who gave duty as ordered. He sometimes argues with his father, who still is a communist. “To be an entrepreneur means that you have to work day and night,” he says to Andrej. And he answers: “Yes, so what?”

From the original story Das kleine Europa von Selfmade-Man Andrej
 from our blog Buterbrod und Spiele.
Awarded with the Grimme Online Award 2019

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