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Gallery Anatoly Kudreavtcev  - 300 pictures





The Village of Shanevo





The Lake Dolotzo is 3 km long. The widest part of the lake is 500 meters. One end of the lake is "sharp". I think this is the reason why the lake got its name. Doloto is a sharp metal instrument, Dolotzo is a small Doloto. The lake as deep as 30 meters in some places. The color of the water is brown-black Put your hand into the water and hold it 10 inches down you won't be able to see it. The water in the lake has healing qualities. All your cuts will be healed if you washed them with this water. Tea made in Samovar is very tasty, especially if you add some local flowers in it. But only those who tried this tea can appreciate it.

Sometime back in history this lake and my village was local center. Russian Orthodox monastery was situated at the lake. Lutvanians destroyed it in 17th century (o, these Lutvanians!). My Grandma Nastia told me that monks hid all monastery treasures in the big church bell, then sealed the bell and hid the bell itself. According to the legend they dropped it into Dirt Luka silty, swampy part of the lake. What got into Dirt Luka lost forever, people say. It was a rumor though that the bell was not sank but buried under the crooked (curved) pine tree on the village cemetery. Giant pine trees are still growing. That's all what's left of that old monastery. I remember very vividly that old crooked pine tree, hanging over the dirt road. I always shrivel walking that road at night. Big trees waiving their heavy branches like claws they are mourning and groaning and creaking.







Shanevo is elevated high on the hill. The entire area is a big hill called Valdaisky Height. It is known in Russia as the Zone of Anomaly. You can feel the presence of special energy in steep old hills and abrupt cliffs. These curves of the land remind me of a woman's body. When I'm in Shanevo I always feel the presence of woman origin of this land. As you can see on the map Shanevo village is situated on a plato. Rivers are going down to North and South from this elevated area. Famous river Volga the symbol of Russia takes the beginning a little further down the map, only 60 km from the village. Shanevo is surrounded by marshy land. A very small lake Yaichko ("An egg") very well known in this area for the great quantities of blueberries, cranberries and "moroshka" berries. Several rivers take their beginning from this vast marsh area including Yavon River, mother-river for Dolotzo lake.







Famous Russian pilot the hero of the war against Germans in 1942-1945 had his plane crash in this marsh. With his legs broken he was crawling through the marsh for several month eating only pinecones and drinking water. For a long time the fuselage of his plane was seen stuck out of the marsh, locals say. Other sight of anomaly is in 1 km from the village an old mine. It housed a strategic weapon with the atomic warhead. From my best estimation this head aimed toward to North Carolina, US.

I have to say that Shanevo people didn't have electricity until 1970s. They were using oil lamps, they were making bread in mason stoves and washing themselves in old style bath houses with firewood heating and no ventilation (method "po-chernomu" or "black method" because of the color of the bath house walls).

Civilization came to Shanevo on the wings of a military rocket. This rocket was a big secret, so everybody was told about it. To insure the secretness of the object they build a bus stop at the sight. Once I saw that secret rocket! They lift it up for maintenance, and the nose of the rocket stuck out threatening USA! Once a week they were delivering new team of service men to the sight by helicopter. The helicopter was flying low above the village, roaring to the amusement of locals. In the middle of 80th this secret rocket was disassembled as part of demilitarization agreement with US. The only left was that old mine. Parts of the equipment soon were taken apart by locals to be sold for color metal scrap. Then 30 meters deep mine was filled up.

For the unemployed locals roaming around the village former military base is the source of all kinds of treasures and often the only source of income. They sell scrap metals to those "city guys" who buys up. The repertoire of "goodies" can easily be extended by aluminum forks and spoons stolen from the houses of "dachniks" people who goes to the city for winter and leave their houses unattended.






My old house
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© Translation - Natalia Tuchina


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