MOSCOW DO'S AND DON'TS
Transportation Avoid Aeroflot whenever possible. On international flights, permissible luggage weight is low - and they'll hold you to it. This fellow traveler once had to pay $1,000 for excess baggage. If traveling within the country, take the train. It's more reliable, a great way to meet people, and relaxing. RestaurantsSkip to next paragraph
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Make sure you know well in advance where your next meal is coming from. The only restaurant that is obliged to feed you is the one in your hotel - and then, only if you show up during the limited meal hours. Your best bet is to make reservations. But beware: When a foreigner orders a table, the restaurant may ``help'' you by covering your table with expensive hors d'oeuvres before you arrive.
That describes just about everything for sale here, either in hard-currency souvenir shops or at the flea market at Izmailovsky Park. But Izmailovsky is more fun: It's outdoors, you can bargain with the merchants, and some items make good conversation pieces. There's the wooden matryoshka dolls of Soviet and Russian leaders, starting with Gorbachev and going down to a tiny Peter the Great. Then there's the wooden Gorbachev doll with the rounded bottom that bounces back when you knock it over.
``The Complete Guide to the Soviet Union,'' by Victor and Jennifer Louis (New York: St. Martin's Press, $13.95), is good for a multi-city tour. For a book that focuses just on Moscow and Leningrad, try the ``Blue Guide to Moscow and Leningrad,'' by Evan and Margaret Mawdsley (New York: W.W. Norton, $19.95).