15 years ago...
Morning. Finishing my scalding coffee as I go, I start packing and close the door and leave the apartment. I run down the stairs. I catch the warm rays of the sun on me, they slip through the wide windows of the entrance. I smile. A car is waiting at the front door. I sit down. We're leaving. In the flow of cars, I admire the windows of fashion boutiques flashing along the avenue. They attract hundreds of curious eyes! I drive up to a 5-story building and go inside. I slip into the office with a quick gait and find myself feeling the scale of what's happening. It amazes, surprises, and seems incredible. Once it was a dream: luxury, influential connections, friends-the first persons of the country, unlimited opportunities for development and improvement. One day, from a small boutique, a whole fashion empire grew up, which became known on the scale of an entire planet. I could. I did it with my hard work, my character, and my iron will. In the evening, I'm going to a business dinner. I go into a restaurant and hear the crowd rushing - "Vanity has arrived...". There are many faces here: businessmen, politicians, world fashion designers, there is life here, I like it! Everything changed in one day... Betrayal... Disease... I am torn apart by those who only recently smiled, looking into the eyes. The ones I called my friend. Like a pack of hungry jackals, they bite their throats for their own gain. I am no longer the owner of my empire - it was forcibly taken away, taking advantage of my weakness. You need the strength to fight, but the disease takes over... All doors and opportunities are closed to me.
The ban on leaving Russia lasted almost a year... I could not hug my youngest son, who was then 2.5... but on one of thousands of such evenings ... Late evening. Call. A dry voice on the phone: "There's a chance, Mila. If not now, then never again.» ...Without noticing anything ... I start packing something in my suitcase ... I call a taxi ... I'm going to the airport. I look at the runaway runway from the plane, a lump rises in my throat: everything that was dear remains here, I can no longer return to the place that I called home. An exile... From this moment begins a difficult period of my life, to which I will be very grateful.