re_alisma "As we followed the banks of the Tura River going northeast, we came to the village of Pokrovskoye. I had wanted to check this village out because it was the hometown of Rasputin-- not Valentin Rasputin, the Siberian writer, but the original, unhinged self-described holy man Rasputin, abettor of the downfall of the Romanov line. The village was all gray wood and stretched along the river for miles. Sergei did not care to look for Rasputin memorabilia-- for an old church associated with Rasputin, perhaps, or a Rasputin museum. And Rasputin was not the kind of celebrity whose home place seemed eager to claim him; I saw no signs anywhere, including at either edge of town, that mentioned his name. Later, I learned that there is a small Rasputin museum in Pokrovskoye, but to visit it you have to make arrangements in advance. Sergei drove straight through the village without a pause while I fretted and said nothing. Rasputin, it was said, gave off a powerful odor of a goat. What a museum you could make about a guy like that! Oh, well." 111025
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