Why is Russia like it is?

Here is a comprehensive yet of manageable size, profound yet easy to read article by Martin Levine, former Foreign Service Officer, explaining why Russia is what it is with all her peculiarities, which are likely to make our lives more difficult than they have to be for a long time to come. I stumbled onto it on Quora.com

I have spent a few months in Russia so I maybe understand their attitude a little bit.

The Russians have a set of issues that make it difficult for them to relate to the rest of the world, not just the USA.

A Profound Sense of Loss

The Russians are sort of like the British. They had an Empire and they lost it. Some parts of the Soviet Union were kept there by force, an internal empire. The Uzbeks, the Ukrainians, the Kazakhs, might have preferred to do their own thing. Then of course there were the “satellite “ countries of Eastern Europe. And, the Russians had outposts in Cuba, Vietnam, Angola and elsewhere.

The link to the rest of the article >

Norwegians in Murmansk, Lovozero and around

Here is a story by Kristin Evju from her Norwegians’ group September 2017 visit to the local cultural Sami events in Murmansk and Lovozero, with a detour to Seidjavr Lake, with the assistance of Mikhail Barakovsky, with whose support I took two Swedish journalists to see reindeer keepers a couple of years ago.

The story is of the “atmospheric” type, with not much in the way of practical details, but a would-be traveler can, and are encouraged to contact us for these.

Rye dough figurine celebration in Kuzreka

Rye dough ritual figurine celebration took place in Kuzreka yesterday, August 8. That was the 8th event of this sort, and this time it attracted a crowd of 2000, including the representatives of the regional authorities and a bunch of folk music groups.

Part of the festival was the scarecrow competition. The only part of the festivities that made me regret I wasn’t there in person.

Here are some pictures of the event borrowed from hibiny.com:

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Russian-Finnish Festival in Vyborg August 5-6 2017

The Kukushka festival of Russian and Finnish culture and music is taking place in Vyborg (Finnish: Viipuri), Leningrad region, some 100km northwest from St. Petersburg, on the weekend of August 5-6, on the Central Market Square of the town. 

More at www.kukushkafest.ru/suomeksi, in Finnish and Russian.

A recent video of events in connection with 500 years of Kandalaksha

A sailing regatta, historic reconstruction, arts and crafts, and a concert took place on the Monastery Cape on July 2. Here is a video of the event:

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Archangelsk British Military Cemetery. Photos of all tombstones.

Moscow ornithologist Pavel Kvartalnov has recently made, on our request that was, in turn, prompted by an enquiry by the person who contributes to the Yorkshire Regiment WW1 Remembrance site, a full set of the Arkhangelsk British Cemetery graves. They can be found at [removed on author’s requestб probably available if you ask for it].

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“Attempts to Establish Eider Farms in the USSR and Why These Failed”

An article on the history of eider farming attempts in the USSR, written by my mate Alexandra (and translated by me) has very recently come out in an Environmental and Society Portal “Arcadia“.

Comments that you can leave under the article are welcomed and invited.

To read “Eider Farming Attempts in the USSR and Why These Failed” proceed here.

British cemetery in Murmansk

A couple of years ago I wrote mentioning the British Cemetery in Murmansk from the WW1 days. Recently I got a request for grave photos, and received the following story from Alexandra’s Murmansk acquaintances that I’d like to share with you:

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Finnish Culture Festival in Petrozavodsk Nov. 2-12

The program includes the restaurant day, folk dancing, an exhibition of Karel and Finnish fabric-making, and a movie festival.

Dates: Nov. 2 to 12

Address: ul. Pervomayskaya 2, . No entrance fee.

See the Agriculture Club VK and Facebook page. The Agriculture Club defines itself as a “hotbed of culture” and after a cursory examination of its VK and Facebook pages I was impressed with the scope and intensity of its activities. Definitely on my “to visit” list if I end up in Petrozavodsk for a few hours.

Events in honor of 100 years since the founding of Murmansk

murmanskIf you happen to be in Murmansk in the beginning of October, while the city is celebrating 100 years since its founding in 1916, there is no shortage of things to see. Many of them can be enjoyed without any knowledge of Russian. Here is the summary of main events to keep you entertained:

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