Gloria Saltzman tries to console an old friend from Ukraine who feels angry and helpless in the face of the Russian onslaught.
It was a silly mistake. We had pulled out the detergent drawer for our washing machine. YouTube videos couldn’t help my husband and I repair it.
Alex had come to my rescue before to repair broken appliances. Luckily, he could stop by in the morning on his way to another job.
Alex and his family are from Ukraine, though he has been in the United States for several years now. He talked politics with emotion, and said he hated Putin as he had never hated anyone. He pulled out his phone and showed me a photograph of Putin’s estate. A castle for a dictator who would be king.
The washing machine repair was the day before Russia invaded Ukraine after recognizing the rebel territories Donetsk and Luhansk as sovereign states. “I am sorry Alex,” I said. He shook his head sadly.