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In the wilds (by my standards)


Looking for information about the place where my colleagues and I are spending the weekend (on one of those awful "away days" modern businesses use for "bonding") I found the interesting account in the linked article by Henry Kissinger of the first visit by westerners to what was then "the Politburo hunting lodge" or "the Soviet Camp David".

Putinblair I grew up in the countryside next to my grandfather's farm, but I am a city boy now. I have had all the nature I need for my lifetime. While I respect and defend the rights of hunters (Man is a hunter-gatherer, and I have no sympathy for those sentimentalists and inverse snobs who would deny our nature) I have no personal desire to kill my own food. While I have enjoyed a Finnish sauna in the past, physical modesty precludes my trying a communal Russian banya. The waters of the Volga and the Shosha are far too cold right now for me to risk falling into them from a boat. So the attractions of this place are not really for me. Still, it will be interesting to walk where Kissinger, Nixon and Brezhnev once did.