Three more days, and three more stops. We pulled into Goritsky on Saturday morning. As soon as we got off the ship we were in the middle of a market selling furs, linen shirts and skirts, and the ubiquitous painted wooden dolls that you always see at garage sales. I regretted that it is not politically correct for Sally to wear furs since some of the ‘knitted’ mink jackets and shawls were absolutely beautiful. One of our fellow travelers noted that at
We set off by bus for Kirillov, one of the oldest and most famous monasteries in
Goritsky has a long way to go before it gets a UNESCO designation. But it was a very authentic place and probably quite typical of a remote Russian town. We hung around the market, and Sally tried to find an internet café. Unfortunately, no one spoke any English, but her search was not entirely without success. She did find a café. It just didn’t have any internet!
We returned to the ship just after noon. At four I had another Russian language class, but passed on Dr. Vern Swanson’s class on the Art of the
We spent the evening waiting to go through the six locks that would take us down towards the
Since we were not arriving at our next destination until 4, we spent the day lounging around the sundeck, attending a Russian class, and watching the third segment of the History Channel documentary on the Czars.
At 4 we arrived at Kizhi, a UNESCO designated World Heritage Site on a small island in the middle of a lake, and immediately set off for a walking tour. The island contained a variety of wooden structures, some which had been built there, and some which had been transported and reassembled. The highlight was an 18th century church, with 22 onion shaped domes, that had been built on the island without any metal nails or other metal ties. Only wooden dowels had been used. The domes were clad in aspen shingles which had turned silver and glistened in the afternoon. The main structure was constructed with pine logs almost 300 years old.
While most of the other buildings had been renovated over the years, they still had their original timbers. I was particularly impressed by a wooden windmill that had been constructed on a pivoting base so that it could be turned to capture the available wind. (I’ll be interested to see if this is common in
This morning, we arrived at Mandrogi. It can best be described as a historic building theme park. It was developed by a Russian entrepreneur with a wacky design sense and too much money. There is a rumour that Putin has built a place here. Somehow, I doubt it since he can live anywhere he wants in
But I know that he has been here since there is a photo of him at the
The last three days have gone by very quickly. Tonight we got dressed for the Captain's Dinner. Tomorrow we arrive in