Saturday, February 25, 2012

U.S.S.R. - Moscow - 11.6.1970

From my Notes:

Go on Sight Seeing tour of Kremlin, walk along outside of wall, see mile or more long queue to see Lenin's Tomb. 

See the Coaches and Crowns etc. of the Kings and Queens of Russia.  

Also see inside the Churches inside the Kremlin, Breshnev doesn't work here.

See Great Bell... Broken.    Also new building for Conferences.

In afternoon go on our Compulsory Intourist Tour of City, taken to Red Square, St Basil's, Lenin's Tomb, G.U.M.* then drive across River to look at the Kremlin from a terrific place.

Drive past all the interesting buildings, go to see the University which was built by Volunteers.

Our Guide is very good, he knows a lot about everything, he says he lives in two rooms with his parents and one brother and they share a kitchen and bathroom with only one other family.  He earns 120 Roubles a month and pays 12 for rent each month, he is well off.**

* The G.U.M. store was fantastically interesting and very beautiful, this is where I bought my very first Babushka Matroushka set of wooden dolls.  I now have more than 300 sets,  plus all sorts of things with Babushkas on them :-)  I had seen these as a child and always wanted one of my own, they fascinate me!

**  We wondered at the value of these compulsory tours, the guides were absolutely delightful and were,  justifiably very proud of their cities and we really appreciated their tour and knowledge but...  proudly telling us... 'Capitalist from the West'... that they shared a kitchen and bathroom and four of them lived in two rooms?? ... surely those who organized these tours knew we lived in better conditions.   I quietly added up the number of rooms my parents lived in, in their modest suburban home... 10 actually... and we didn't share our kitchen or bathroom with any other families.

Red Square from Google Earth above.

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