INTERVIEW WITH MARIA ELISEEVA By Justin Lifflander
Every November I see Sheremetyevo Airport transformed: strange people in bright costumes and funny hats appear, surrounded by clouds of soap bubbles.
In their midst a tall oddity sporting a blue mustache stands out. He marches about the airport with his friends, dressed in giant underpants. This is Patch Adams. “What are you celebrating? The circus left town and the clowns stayed behind?” – Such questions are heard everywhere we go in Moscow and St. Petersburg.
Volunteers from around the world join Doctor Patch Adams in Russia. Together we visit orphanages and hospitals, homeless shelters and old-folks homes; we make house-calls to families caring for sick relatives. We comfort those who are suffering and alone. Every November, for more than 20 years, we go to the SergievPossad home for blind and deaf children, the Republic children’s hospital on Leninsky Avenue, and the St. Petersburg Turner Institute, among others.