Literature Beverly Hills à la russe

Peredelkino Travel Blog

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Patriarch's Residence

My mom is a very special person to me, and since soon I am getting married and moving out I am trying to enjoy every minute spent together with her. Travelling is definitely the best way to create memories together, so I decided to take her on a short weekend trip.

 

The original idea was to go to Kolomna, a small Russian town about 3 hours away from Moscow but since this year we are not enjoying a real summer, it has been cold and rainy, we started thinking of an alternative destination closer to the city. Mom suggested Peredelkino, and it was a brilliant idea. Just 20 minutes from Moscow by train, this small village is a home to many famous Russian writers of the 20th century and our days, Literature Beverly Hills à la russe indeed. I remember visiting this place with my aunt when I was in high school, and my mom want there with my dad long long time ago, even before I was born.

New church under construction
We made our mind  - Peredelkino, our destination this Saturday.

 

Peredelkino is very easily assessable by train from Kievsky rail way station (“Kievskaya” metro station) -  actually, driving in the village is no big fun, and train tickets are damn cheap - 52 roubles round trip (about $1,70).

 

As we got off the train, we headed directly to the Church of Transfiguration and the Patriarch Residence. The church yard was crowded that Saturday morning: young parents brought their babies for christening: women dressed in white and men having tea in front of the church - an idealistic picture that you can hardly locate in time if not for cell phone and cars parked nearby.

 

Just across a small field we saw another one, the Church of Resurrection.

A would-be golden domn
Recently built, this white temple serves as a cemetery church. Peredelkino cemetery attracts people from all over the world to come and tribute to Boris Pasternak, the author of “Doctor Zhivago”, who is buried there. We entered the cemetery and headed Pasternak’s grave. Cemeteries make me always think about our life, and every time I visit them I wonder why it is so quiet there and why birds love singing over wooden crossed and marble monuments. Are they souls of deads?

 

We walked around the cemetery and at the end of it reached a simple white monument with a sideview of Pasternak engraved on it. We stood there for a while, crossed ourselves and went to the grave of Korney Tchukovsky, a writer, translator and literature critic, famous in the Soviet Union and Russia with his children books. Not far from it has his eternal sleep Arseny Tarkovsky, a poet, next to a wooden cross in the memory of his son, movie director Andrey Tarkovsky, who is buried in France.

 

This visit to the cemetery gave us a feeling of accomplishment, like we did something we should do, and it doesn't matter those people we never met in life but read their books and saw their movies.

Church of Transfiguration

 

Now our way led to the village itself, we crossed a bridge over the Setun-river, and in some 10-15 minutes turned right to a small side-street dark from old trees framing it. The first stop in the village and the main destination of the trip, the house of Boris Pasternak. A simple wooden house like millions of others in this country - and here lived someone who was a big thinker and writer. We were the only visitors that day, and one of two women working there gave us a short guided tour: kitchen, living room, Pasternak’s wife room, his office where he wrote “Doctor Zhuvago” and many poems, and his room where he died in 1960. Flowers always lay on his bed.

 

Our next destination was Korney Tchukovsky House, just 5 minutes walk from Pasternak’s. But first our attention caught a green wooden house with giant letters on it saying “LIBRARY”. This was one of Tchukovky’s activities, still working nowadays. The writer’s house is next building. As we approached it, we could not help smiling - just in front of it we saw a tree decorated with all kinds of shoes (!!!): this refers to one of his famous children’s poems - “Tchudo-derevo” (“Wonder tree”).

Church of Transfiguration

 

The house itself seemed closed, but suddenly we saw a guy crossing the yard. He said he would ask if we can visit the museum. In a minute he let us in, we entered a room where a group of 6 people was listening to a guide… and one of this people was my mom’s secretaryJ Small world!

 

The guide was telling a story from 1930s and I could not get who he was talking about, and finally I realized: he was telling the plot of a novel written by Lidia Tchukovskaya, Korney Tchukovsky’s daughter, who was also a writer, critic and a citizen ready to fight for human rights and freedom of speech and thought.

Church of Transfiguration
The guide told us about Tchukovsky, his life and work, not only the children’s stuff he is well-known for, but his literature criticism books, translations, friendship with other big writers of his time, about Lidia and her war with the Soviet Union and the regime, he took us around that small house and told stories about different objects, books etc etc… well, we spent some good 3 hours there and we never got bored! It was just awesome! The history of the country, its people - famous and not, Russian and world literature went by as we were listening to that guide ��" the guy has a real passion for what he is doing and he is eager to share what he knows with everybody.

 

After that wonderful guided tour/lecture we headed to pay a visit to another important house - Bulat Okudzhava’s. Poet, writer, composer, singer, one of the most important figures in the life and culture of his time, he is still very influential and beloved by people. We didn’t know that June 12th is his memory day, and we got lucky again: there was a free-entrance open-air concert followed by a documentary. People were sitting there on simple wooden benches, enjoying a nice summer day and singing Okudzhava song. It was a great, home-feel atmosphere and a perfect closing of our short trip. Literature, nature, history, people’s lives, true feelings, emotions - all in one day in one place. Sometimes we don’t need to travel far to experience something new, and I am happy my mom and created some memories together we can always keep in our hearts.

Flowers near Church of Transfiguration

 

USEFUL LINKS:

§   Peredelkino Website www.peredelkino-land.ru (English available)

§   Boris Pasternak Museum Website www.

pasternakmuseum.ru (English available)

§   Korney Tchukovsky Museum Website www.museum.ru/M489 (Russian only)

§   Bulat Okudzhava Museum www.museum.ru/m2088 (Russian only)

 

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Patriarchs Residence
Patriarch's Residence
New church under construction
New church under construction
A would-be golden domn
A would-be golden domn
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Flowers near Church of Transfigura…
Flowers near Church of Transfigur…
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Partiarchs Residence
Partiarch's Residence
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration Gates
Church of Transfiguration Gates
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Church of Transfiguration
Grave of Boris Pasternak
Grave of Boris Pasternak
Grave of Boris Pasternak
Grave of Boris Pasternak
Grave of Boris Pasternak
Grave of Boris Pasternak
Grave of Korney Tchukovsky
Grave of Korney Tchukovsky
Grave of Arseny Tarkovsky and cros…
Grave of Arseny Tarkovsky and cro…
Church of Resurrection
Church of Resurrection
Church of Resurrection
Church of Resurrection
Church of Resurrection
Church of Resurrection
Setun River
Setun River
Setun River
Setun River
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House. Room and bed wher…
Pasternak House. Room and bed whe…
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Pasternak House
Tchukovsky Kids Library
Tchukovsky Kids Library
Tchukovsky Kids Library
Tchukovsky Kids Library
Locks Russian style:)
Locks Russian style:)
Tchukovsky Kids Library
Tchukovsky Kids Library
Tchukovsky House
Tchukovsky House
Wonder Tree:)
Wonder Tree:)
Wonder Tree:)
Wonder Tree:)
Wonder Tree
Wonder Tree
Wonder Tree
Wonder Tree
My mom amazed by the Wonder Tree
My mom amazed by the Wonder Tree
Wonder Tree
Wonder Tree
Tchukovsky House
Tchukovsky House
Tchukovsky House
Tchukovsky House
Tchukovsky House
Tchukovsky House
Tchukovsky House
Tchukovsky House
Concert at Okudzhavas
Concert at Okudzhava's
Concert at Okudzhavas
Concert at Okudzhava's
Concert at Okudzhavas
Concert at Okudzhava's
Concert at Okudzhavas
Concert at Okudzhava's
At Okudzhavas
At Okudzhava's
At Okudzhavas
At Okudzhava's
At Okudzhavas
At Okudzhava's
At Okudzhavas
At Okudzhava's
At Okudzhavas
At Okudzhava's
At Okudzhavas
At Okudzhava's
At Okudzhavas
At Okudzhava's
At Okudzhavas
At Okudzhava's
Peredelkino
photo by: Marinushka