Before coming to Russia, I really had no idea what to expect outside of some vague notions of Soviet apartment buildings, lots of blocky concrete structures and the endless steppe of Siberia. I was wholly unprepared for the beauty we see here on a daily basis, and we've only just begun our trek through this vast country!
The beauty comes in various forms, from the perfectly ripe tomatoes sold on the sides of the road, to the glint in an old woman's eye as she sells us two home-grown, home-canned dill pickles from a giant jar. It is present in the hundreds of crumbling yet opulent churches, the lakes and rivers and fields we pass, and, perhaps most of all, beauty comes in the form of Russia's homes.
I cannot get over these houses!
I am so curious to know, who makes them?
Who carves the windows?
Could you once buy window frames like these at a store?
Or did people make them themselves?
Was there a special craftsperson that constructed them in a wood-shop of some kind?
We left on this adventure to discover the world. When we return, we'll have a lot of reading to do to, just to learn about what it was we saw! In any case, I admire, as always, fine craftsmanship, attention to detail and aesthetics. I hope these gorgeous Russian houses follow us all the way to Mongolia!