“I saved it, but now I have to work. Otherwise I would have to go back to Moscow”

Nina in Paris

“Most of my friends in Moscow advise me to stay where I am”


Nina has to treat tendinitis on her shoulder. His father was operated on for a heart condition. She says she will return to Moscow for the first time in September if her work path does not materialise. She feels she has no choice, with only a few months’ subsidies left before her. In her tiny apartment in Paris, she tells us she spends a lot of time thinking positively and dreaming of good things for the future. She also says she still can’t believe the reality of Russia’s war in Ukraine.

I RECOVERED BUT I HAVE TO WORK NOW. I applied to a start-up interested in investing in wine, and if the founders decide to change the team, I’m in a good position. I like wine. I don’t know yet where the position will be in Monaco or Paris if I am chosen to develop the business. This is my great hope.

Otherwise, I guess I have no choice but to return to Moscow in September. Given my professional background, I have no luck finding a position in state or semi-state companies that represent 90% of the activities in Russia. [Nina était employée d’un média indépendant avant de quitter la Russie], however, it may be possible to find a job in the private sector. I may be deluding myself that I have more opportunities there than here. Most of my friends advise me to stay where I am. But I miss Moscow more than ever before.

I am afraid of my own behavior. Still, I’m afraid to “like” posts against the war on social networks that I agree with. I feel sorry for the Russians who left the country and expressed their opinions. There is no return for them. And they will not find their place in Europe. My friend in Riga, Latvia told me that there are many Russian journalists there and very little work. Anyone who speaks is charged with a crime for speaking out against the war.

I was very careful on social media. I’m not a hero at all. I grew up in the Soviet Union, I know the rules, pure dualism. Everyone thought something and everyone did the opposite. I am a professional hypocrite. To survive, it had to be. So I can adapt, hide, be prudent. However, I will never say anything contrary to my thoughts or beliefs, such as supporting war. In Russia this is called ‘internal migration’”. We hold our positions.

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