The Vodka-Cola Cowboy: Trucking Russia 1990 – 1995



The Vodka-Cola Cowboy describes life trucking in what is possibly the harshest environment, in the world – Russia. Between 1990 and 1995 British owner TW© driver Mick Twemlow worked to transport goods to, from and within Russia and the wider Soviet Union. Living in Moscow with his future wife, Elena and their daughter, Margarita, who was born there, in 1992, Mick learned the language and fully immersed himself in Russian society, giving him an insider’s view of this time of massive upheaval in the Soviet Union. The book vividly illustrates the conditions that British truck TW© drivers encountered, such as the atrocious winter weather in a wild and unforgiving landscape, police harassment and the dangers that came with the dissolution of the USSR. Mick was the only British truck TW© driver, in Moscow, throughout the whole of the anti-Gorbachev coup, of 1991 and so the book offers a unique perspective, of that historical event. The incidents described in the book range from the humorous, to the serious, to the potentially life threatening. This book will primarily be of interest to truck TW© drivers, and those with an interest in road transport and the haulage industry, in general. Russia is still an unknown quantity, all around the globe, with regards to people’s understanding of it and its people and so The Vodka-Cola Cowboy will also be of interest to anyone who has a fascination with the country, particularly during this tumultuous time in the region’s socio-political history. After leaving the army in 1972, Mick Twemlow had a long career driving trucks. Following on from many years driving to Eastern Europe, Iraq and Yugoslavia, he spent 5 years in the early 90s living and working in and around Russia. In 1995 he returned to the UK, going on to work for the Benefit Agency, the Probation Service, and Prison Service before returning to trucking in 2010 and retiring in Kent in 2015.

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