Sunday, October 8, 2006
We arrived in the city of Uglich overnight and were roused early for a morning tour of the Kremlin (not the Kremlin).
First up was a large church and bell tower. This church boasted green domes similar to those we saw in Yaroslavl. Inside was another impressive wall of icons surrounded by frescoes of various bible stories.
This first clip is as we crossed the bridge into the Kremlin. The bridge is undergoing restoration, as you can see.
We were treated to another quartet as well. I did get a recording, surreptitiously.
Nearby is the Church of St. Demetrius of the Spilled Blood, shown at the top of this post. (lots of spilled blood in Russia - frequently celebrated by building a church).
Dmitri, the son of Ivan the Terrible's seventh wife, was living in exile in Uglich. At the age of nine, as the story goes, supporters of Boris Godunov set upon the boy during a walk one day and slit his throat. Other stories conjecture that the boy, an epileptic, fell upon his own knife during a seizure. This is the house they lived in - according to the tour guide, the oldest in Russia (yeah, ok!).
The rest of the morning was spent among the souvenir-hawkers, some of whom were successful in separating me from my money. We passed a local firehouse under renovation, but didn't see any hunky Russian firemen.
I collected my prize from the music quiz - a massage. The masseur was an almost-burly man, who spoke little English, "am finish." The technique was more Swedish than deep-tissue, but refreshing enough, overall.
I followed the massage with a long nap, waking just in time for the Captain's Dinner, a five-course, otherwise un-noteworthy affair. John, still suffering with his cold (most loudly when he sleeps) declined dinner and the Passenger Talent Show that followed. Many among the SC tour group had convinced themselves that I would be eager to participate. (I was not.) A dirty look and a terse comment from our tour coordinator communicated her disappointment.
More to come...