Saturday, March 9, 2013

Returning to Vytegra

I participated in the first RUSLAN ASB trip to Vytegra three years ago. I’m so fortunate to have had the opportunity to go again. The experience is very compacted, so there is only so much one can take in on a given trip. This time around, I was really impressed by the beauty of the Russian heartland in winter. I have come to appreciate what the heartland has to offer, which cannot be found in the cities. What exactly that is, I cannot say - you will have to come see for yourself.

As one of my friends commented on my Vytegra photos - I never knew white could be so beautiful!

When we arrived to work at the museum on the first day, one of the museum staff members promptly announced that she recognized me. I was so surprised! Later, when we visited School #2, two students - Alex and Katya - asked me if I had been to Vytegra before because I looked familiar. I remembered them as well! Little Alessa in Makachyova is growing up, too. It was great to be able to see and thank Tamara Pavlovna again for making this trip a reality.

I will leave you with the words of Fyodor Tyutchev:

Умом Россию не понять,
Аршином общим не измерить:
У ней особенная стать –
В Россию можно только верить.

You will not grasp her with your mind
Or cover with a common label,
For Russia is one of a kind –
Believe in her, if you are able... (translation by Anatoly Liberman)

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