Author Topic: New pics AP & Park Oct '05  (Read 29042 times)

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Petrushka

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New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« on: November 30, 2005, 08:14:28 AM »
Hello - I've been enjoying this site for ages without ever joining - many of you are invaluable sources of info and new pics.  I've always felt a little jealous that other people share the same interests as I suppose I've wanted to keep it as my little escape for so long.

Anyway, I've finally made it to Russia - St Petersburg is better than I dreamt and Tsarskoe is simply beautiful.  I have to disagree with some and say that I prefer the AP in its present state, for me personally the restoration of palaces such as the Catherine Palace breaks the link with the past - anyway ignore my dribble.

I cannot for the life of me work out how to link this up so I wanted to make my pics available - loads of the AP, the Park, and various others. I'm sure I can trust people not to abuse so here goes:

www.photobucket.com

My username - Petrushka3
My password - nigeljemson

There are a lot in there!

Hope these are useful and enjoyable

x to all

Offline londo954

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2005, 12:25:36 PM »
Your pictures are absolutely fantastic... Let me be the first to say thank you !!! Did you manage to get any pics of the entryhall of teh AP or could you describe it. How big is it what type of floors , how high does it go....THANKS !!!!

Offline Margarita Markovna

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2005, 12:45:18 PM »
Are you going to make the entry hall, londo954? (or just interested?  ;) )

Offline londo954

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2005, 03:09:15 PM »
Both  ;D

Offline Laura Mabee

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2005, 12:17:02 AM »
Fantastic Petrushka!!
Wow! Thank you so much for sharing!!!  ;D

Petrushka

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #5 on: December 01, 2005, 02:20:40 AM »
Glad they were of interest.
londo954 - I must admit I failed to take any of the entrance hall but it is a remarkably simple affair.  It covers almost the whole width of the wing with a door leading to a stairwell on your right and an identical (but closed door to the left.
As with all the palaces open to the public you are required to place elasticated covers over your shoes to protect the flooring - so the first thing you see is the large bin of these covers.  To the left next to the afore mentioned door is a small wooden room with glass windows - essentially its just a white hut for the security guards currently working there.  Across and next to the right hand door is a small stall selling books etc and tickets.
This entrance hall is actually fairly narrow (in palace proportions) with a wooden 'parque' floor (I assume all modern) and whitewashed walls.  Directly in front of the main door is the inner door which leads straight into the hallway of the wing - as I recall there are three large semi-circular steps leading up to this.
The most interesting bit was the door to the right - again as with all palaces and museums you are asked to hand in your jackets bags etc and the 'cloakroom' is through this door.  There is a simple but beautiful metal balustrade painted white, which runs along a stone stairwell.  YOu have to go down a floor to get to the cloakroom which therefore puts you in the 'cellar' or at least a floor three quaters under ground level.  It was all very sanitised with drab walls but all freshly painted.  As the palace was very quiet at the time we had the full attention of a guard/policeman and one of the not so cheerful old ladies who actually takes the jackets.
Anyway the stairs continued up and obviously onto the childrens floor.  Despite using this trick in Egypt (where it worked well) and to my lasting regret, I didn't have the courage to try and offer the guard money to take me upstairs.....  I keep wishing I'd flashed a few notes at him but not speaking any Russian it could have been a terrible idea.
So the biggest disappointment was looking up the stairs (which had a 'new' door blocking entrance upstairs) and wishing more than anything on earth that I could get up there.
Sorry to drone
x

Offline ChristineM

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2005, 03:42:33 AM »
Thank you Petrushka.   Interesting to learn that the metal ballustrade has been painted white.  That indicates TSM is, little by little, gaining more of a foothold.   Not so long ago the ballustrade was painted a dull, military green.    I doubt this is original.   It looks much too utilitarian.

In recent years it has become absolutely impossible to reach the Children's Floor - irrespective of who you 'know'.   I understand nothing remains there of what it used to be.    It would be amazing to walk in the footsteps......

tsaria

Petrushka

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #7 on: December 01, 2005, 03:57:34 AM »
Thanks tsaria,
I found the AP quite a conflicting experience.  As lovely as it was to see the recreation of some of the rooms, I found it a little sterile and posed.  I think, for me at least, the excitement comes from sharing the same space as the IF and not from viewing a mock-up.  For instance I managed to clamber through a hole in Maria & Anastasia's hospital and briefly wander around in the derelict shell - that for me was fantastic - it felt as though no one had interfered and the link was direct.  (this site is leading me to be far too honest!).

I completely regressed when I was walking around - I picked up a few pieces of the stucco plaster from the outside of the AP (they had already fallen off) and a handful of various seeds from trees etc - my poor girlfriend must have quietly wondered what she'd got into!

Do you know of anyone across this forum who has ever made it upstairs into the childrens floor?  


Offline Sarushka

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #8 on: December 01, 2005, 07:46:31 AM »
Bob Atchison has been up there once, for some kind of meeting regarding restoration, I believe. There's a photo of the meeting around here someplace. He mentioned being able to hear the swallows (or was it sparrows?) outside the children's windows that they wrote about in their diaries. You might do a search on 'swallows' and see what comes up. It's probably a rather old thread...
THE LOST CROWN: A Novel of Romanov Russia -- now in paperback!
"A dramatic, powerful narrative and a masterful grasp of life in this vanished world." ~Greg King

Petrushka

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #9 on: December 01, 2005, 07:59:55 AM »
Thanks for that Sarushka, haven't been able to find the thread in search as yet but I'll keep on trying - should anyone recall it please let me know.

Offline Sarushka

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #10 on: December 01, 2005, 08:01:21 AM »
Found it!

Alexander Palace Interiors
The whole thread is a treasure chest of info, but you'll be particularly interested in reply #55 and reply #149.
THE LOST CROWN: A Novel of Romanov Russia -- now in paperback!
"A dramatic, powerful narrative and a masterful grasp of life in this vanished world." ~Greg King

Offline Laura Mabee

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #11 on: December 01, 2005, 08:35:26 AM »
Petrushka,
You're girlfriend was a very lucky girl to get to visit the AP. Your discriptions of your visit are wonderful. If you were willing to take the time, I would love to hear about your whole trip  ;) :)

Petrushka

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #12 on: December 01, 2005, 09:00:17 AM »
I could bore you silly with it!  Having been obsessesed with the whole topic since I was 11ish I think I'd always thought that once I finally got to Russia, St Petersburg and the AP it would help me move on a little!  Quite the reverse in fact - I've become more 'into' it than ever.  Have managed to acquire an impressive collection of books including some original period accounts and I now have over two hundred postcards of the last IF - again all original, period issues.  Unfortunately my bank balance will probably start to complain in the not to dim and distant future!!!  BUT IT'S WORTH IT

We were so lucky the day we spent at Tsarskoe.  It had snowed a couple of days earlier so there was a lovely crispness to the air - bright sunshine and still plenty of untouched snow everywhere - it really couldn't have been more perfect.

It's true what other people have said about tourists sticking to the Catherine Palace.  I have to admit it didn't really grab me - beautiful though it is - it suffers from feeling very artificial (in my opinion).  The AP is almost an afterthought for many and we spent the entire day walking the palace parks more or less completely alone!

I did get that odd build up of emotions when we first walked towards the AP.  I was hugely excited in a child like way, but really nervous that it would in some way be a disapointment - it wasn't.  I don't want to sound cheap about this topic but it really did quite literally pull on my heart like I cannot describe.  

I felt kinda like everyone else didn't understand and that I had more of a connection and right to be there than them etc etc - unfair I know, but I bet most of the people on this forum would feel the same way.  I think one of the things about the IF is their ability to reach out to people - there's something for everyone there once you start looking.  I really don't know why - I know I'm waffling now - sorry - I do think the key attraction is the innocence and beauty they seem to have - the fact is that in all our hearts they will forever remain, young, beautiful, innocent and pure.  That is their real legacy and their real attraction.

Now I've totally got off the topic and probably gone a teeny bit overboard - sorry Laura M, lots to get out of my system and never had the opportunity before.

x


Offline Sarushka

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #13 on: December 01, 2005, 09:08:28 AM »
Quote
We were so lucky the day we spent at Tsarskoe.  It had snowed a couple of days earlier so there was a lovely crispness to the air - bright sunshine and still plenty of untouched snow everywhere - it really couldn't have been more perfect.


I forgot to mention -- I don't think I've seen photos of the AP & grounds in the snow before!
8)
THE LOST CROWN: A Novel of Romanov Russia -- now in paperback!
"A dramatic, powerful narrative and a masterful grasp of life in this vanished world." ~Greg King

Petrushka

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Re: New pics AP & Park Oct '05
« Reply #14 on: December 01, 2005, 09:18:33 AM »
I highly recommend a winter time visit.  St Petersburg was stunning as well - every bit as beautiful as Paris but with a decadence all its own.  The absolute best thing is discovering places by chance that you know from photos of the IF - eg if you look at my pics the steps leading to the Neva with the Chinese style lions - its pretty much unchanged and you know you are at exactly the same spot.  We also came across Mathilde Kschessinska's house whilst out walking and it suddenly clicked where we were.
The Yussoupov Palace is also highly recommended - the cellar rooms were closed, but I gave one of the curators a begging look and she took us down on our own!  Slightly perculiar wax works but still fantastic.