Myshkin, Yaroslavl oblast

Myshkin (pop. ~6000) would be typical Russian province, with empty streets, sleepy blank faces, and all-around air of habitual low-key despair if not for a fortunate idea, successful marketing, and several enthusiasts who made a brand and build an industry around the city’s silly name. Moscow journalist Ilya Medovoy is credited with the concept. He came up with the idea around 1990, which was the height of Perestroika and when things looked bright and promising and the whole nation was in the most cheerful mood since perhaps liberal reforms of 1880 that ultimately led to the 1917 disaster but that’s another story..

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