St. Petersburg

Loreto Abbey Dalkey

St. Petersburg,



Dear Grandmother,

Are you well? I wish you health and joy. What did you do today?

Today was amazing! I have loved Swan Lake since I was a child. I know you won’t like it but I asked Grandfather Micheál to sponsor me. The tickets were €800. I would have payed for it but he gave it willingly. He sponsored me €400. The rest was taken off my pocket money by my mother.

I pushed my mother out the door of our apartment. I was too excited. My masquerade mask fell loosely from my face and my ribbon was not tightly tied but I love Swan Lake, I couldn’t care too much about it, for that second.   We stood outside the Alexandrinsky theatre. It was beautiful. Statues graced an elegant marble building. My heart soared. I have been to palaces but I can’t imagine standing in front of a theatre, about to enter a theatre Tsars of the past were actually entertained in.

We were too early. I was very excited but I couldn’t change anything so I didn’t bother myself with frustration. The ballet was worth the wait. The Grand Hall was made of gold carvings, white marble and red carpets covering a marble staircase. A lot of people were there. The manners were lovely. The receptionist and the ticket manager had wonderful language. We were offered drinks upon entering too. I love services like this. The show would not start for another half an hour, so me and my mother treated ourselves to a tour of a grand balcony and view of the inner theatre. We bought a score. I was jumping for joy but I kept my poise. My mother always said a lady is elegant. I love being a lady. It feels so me, so relaxing. The crowd of elegant guests turned into groups of loud and annoying tourist groups as we left the Grand Hall. They sat cross legged on chairs. Using ridiculous language! I kept my mouth closed. I didn’t need to worry about them.   We entered the theatre, the real, inner one. Gold, as grand as the Tsars themselves. Red, regal as the coronation gowns heirs wore as they were crowned. A stage and the Swan Lake beginning I loved so much began. I made my way to our seats, my mother following closely behind me. Joy thrilled inside of me. I could never be happier. Gathering up my gown, I walked passed the crowd. They let us pass, as gentlemen should. The show was astounding. Such grace, such enchantment! The dancers were organised. Their feet and movements were very elegant. It looked effortless but I know that it requires a lot of work to get to that standard. I will never forget it. It is one of the greatest experiences of my entire life. I love ballet. I love Swan Lake. Thank you ballerinas, musicians, ballet dancers and Tchaikovsky for such a magic in this world. Mother almost fell asleep though.

Please write back to me soon.

From, your forever loving granddaughter,