In Izhevsk

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THE CULTURES OF DIFFERENT EPOCHS HAVE COMBINED IN IZHEVSK

Ishevsk is the capital of the Udmurt Republic, with a population of 650,000.   It is best known for its gun factory, which is almost two centuries old.  Mihail Kalashnikov, the designer of the famous gun of the same name, still lives and works in Ishevsk.  Other famous residents include Calina Kulakova the skier, four times Olympic champion and nine times world champion.

Udmurtia is the motherland of the great Russian composer Petr Tchaikovsky.  He was born in the small town of Votkinsk and lived there until he was seven years old.   His home is now a museum and open to visitors. 

The founder of Izhvesk was Count Petr Shuvalov, a gifted and inventive figure during the times of the empress Elizaveto Petrovna.

Izhvesk is surrounded from one side with hills and from the other side with the rivers Kama and Vyatka.  The peculiarity of nature and town planning is shown by the Izhvesk Pond.  This artificial lake, opening from the river Izh, forms the character of the inhabitants of Izhvesk, their romanticism, adventurism and their love of nature, hunting and fishing.  During the last century the pond was surrounded by fishermen's houses.

In the summer the embankment of the pond is a place to walk and meet friends.  At sunset, as the orange and golds reflect on the water, the pond has a magic beauty and takes you away from your everyday problems.

Summer in Izhevsk is the time for gardening.  Many inhabitants have gardens in the country where they grow fruits and vegetables for winter use.

Izhevsk has many gardens and fountains where different kinds of entertainment take place during the months of summer and fall.  Many sculptures from Soviet Union times dot the parks.  Of particular interest is the statue "Girl with Oar", which symbolises the epoch of the social realism up to now.

Not so long ago the Alexander Nevsky's cathedral, which was destroyed by the Soviet regime, was restored to all its former glory.  The interior walls are covered with colourful icons  When it was built in the last century, it was built to resemble St Basil's Cathedral in Moscow.

For entertainment there is opera, dramatic and puppet theatres, brass and symphony bands, museums and exhibitions.  Musical festivals honouring Tchaikovsky take place. Around the town there are many monuments of olden times, showing the history of the city.

Udmurtia has many faces, come and see them for yourself.

 

2002-2012 Barbara Elias   

Contact: barbara@BarbaraElias.com

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