Riding the Cash Bus


Amazingly, things are still holding together here in Pridnestrovie, more or less.

There was one big incident, which I will write about separately, but otherwise, this tiny, ignored, and often vilified country is doing spectacularly better than all of its neighbors.

Ramaneti acasa (“Stay home” in Moldovan)

Masks and other protective equipment is being cranked out in enormous volumes by the extensive domestic garment industry. As such, doctors on the front line have all of the equipment they need (so far) even as the number of confirmed cases continues to expand.

And although it wasn’t a planned government move, a young woman (along with her young child) currently isolated in the special coronavirus hospital here started doing a regular video blog. Wisely, state-run media start rebroadcasting it on their social media feeds.

This was a tremendously smart move because it let people see what they are potentially in for if they do get confirmed as having the virus. In other words, it’s not so bad.

Other than that, there’s not much to report. There is plenty of food and other everyday items at the stores. There is no military or armed cops in the streets, and you don’t need a pass to be out in public.

Which, thank goodness, because my daily visits to the river have become a mental lifesaver.

If I could somehow get my hands on a canoe, I truly would feel like a completely free person. Alas, for some reason, I’ve never once seen a canoe (or kayak) on the river. Maybe something to do with the swiftness of the currents? I don’t know.

All Aboard the CA💲H BUS 🚌

Last week, my wife was fortunate enough to actually leave the city – and all thanks to the PMR government!

Back in January, the ass clowns in Chisinau blocked all (Moldova issued) Visa and MasterCard cards from working in Pridnestrovie.

In February, the two governments were supposed to be working out how to lift this blockage, but then the Moldovan anti-corruption agency arrested their own central bank vice president, the main guy on the negotiation team LOL

Anyway, it was to our benefit as there are now tons of people in PMR with blocked Moldova-based cards that also needed to ride the CASH MONEY BUS to Varnita.

Mask up!

Here’s the timeline of how it went down:

Monday – We went all over town trying to get some help. Eventually, we found out who to call, and they told us to write an email, so my wife did. But it was after 5:00 pm when we sent it.

Tuesday – Got an email saying they had received our email.

Wednesday – Got a call saying that because we weren’t PMR citizens, we weren’t eligible for the cash bus.

Thursday – Got a call saying that they’d agreed to make an exception for my wife, but only for her (they specifically said for me not to come, although I don’t know if that’s because I don’t speak Russian well or if it was my American passport).

Friday – My wife rode the CASH BUS to Varnita along with a half dozen other people.

She had my bank card and had no problem getting US dollars from the bank machine, but alas, they were out of Moldovan lei. Luckily though, the manager popped out at a fortunate moment and announced that they were reloading the machine with MDL, so all was well.

My wife came home with a fistful of cash, and we ordered out some sushi for what felt like a very “normal” Friday night, which did wonders for our mental health.

I tell ya… in these crazy times, it’s the little things that really make a difference.

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