The Brightest Town in Russia

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One of the most remote cities in that vast country, the capital of the sparsely populated Russian region. Quite a few people live in Anadyr, just 15,000. This even for the district center in the middle lane is not enough. But not for Chukotka where just 50000 people live.

To tell the truth, fly to Chukotka for just looking at Anadyr is not worth it. There are only a few streets that you completely bypass a couple of hours. Still, one need to fly and change to a helicopter or ship, go on a visit to the Chukchi and deer.

At the same time, this town is an obvious candidate for the title of the brightest town in Russia. See how the perception of the surrounding reality is changing, if one just paint the old Soviet houses!

Arriving at Anadyr airport, you find yourself on the other side of the bay from the city. To access the capital is not available in every season. We were lucky: arriving in the short northern summer, we found a sea navigation on the ship “Kamchatka”. In fierce winter it’s possible to reach the town by hovercrafts, but in the off-season – only by helicopter. And ride to the airport or simply to the village on business can cost you 2,500 rubles ($40) one-way. The boat is worth a mere penny, just a hundred rubles. But even in summer it can be canceled, for example, because of the storm.

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Sailing takes about an hour. The boat is very small  and old. Here you realize how small this huge Chukotka: you have a feeling that all passengers know each other for many years, they greet, talk all the way.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-3

The town meets us with some pile of half-dry ships ashore, two sunken barges overgrown with grass.

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What else is good in the town which immediately catches the eye, in addition to colorful houses? Roads. They are not extensive but good in quality. A bit of traffic. They say the roads are shifted centrally.

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It is the most distant house and the most frightful place in the town.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-7

The absolute majority of houses still painted, brightly painted . Yes, not ideal, yes, paint somewhere requires updating, but tenants have not changed the windows. The main trouble is seagulls, never cease screaming, day or night.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-8

Seagulls scream at full throat, shouting to each other, shit on the heads of passers-by and constantly steal the trash. Flying rats, worse than pigeons!LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-9

Anadyr was built during the Soviet era, and there are almost no new buildings.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-10 LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-11

On some houses, they hung thematically posters about the beauty of Chukotka.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-12

Pedestrian crossings are also painted. And traffic lights are yellow. The city has only two traffic lights.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-13 LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-14 LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-15

I propose you to look at the houses. Almost all of them are built in five floors, and everything is on stilts.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-16

Under the houses there are constructed communications, arranged passages. They say, it’s not snowy in winter, but too windy. Even now, in the summer, I could not run my quadrocopter.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-17

For the same climate reason, all entrances are very high. In order not to drag them in an apartment, strollers and bikes are stored at the bottom. And no one steals them.  Anadyr is safer than any other city in Russia, people are here almost on the island, have no chance escape.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-18

I was surprised by the solar panels that stand in the yard and illuminate the playgrounds. Big battery and small flashlights. Lighting is seasonal, in summer never gets dark, and, in winter, the dark is all day long.

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They do not close entrance doors on a code lock. In winter there can be a strong snowstorm, which makes it impossible to orient in space. Get to the snowstorm is terrible, one can freeze to death or get lost in such a way that can ever be found. Then the people, caught in bad weather on the street, go to the nearest entrance and wait out a blizzard there. LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-22

There is a small amount of cars in the town , so parking there also presents no problems.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-23

Taxi!LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-24

A symbolic place in the city, next to which all are photographed. The monument at the observation deck on the port.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-25

On the wall of one of the houses there is a map of Chukotka Autonomous Okrug.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-26

At the same observation deck there is a couple of the communist era monumentsLR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-27

Sea port.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-28 LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-29

Here’s a pier and sunken barges, which I showed at the beginning of the post. From afar, it becomes clear that they are here to close the port from powerful waves.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-30

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Probably the most famous poster on the wall here.

*Don’t sleep or freeze to death*LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-35

These very hovercrafts that carry passengers to the airport.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-36 LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-37 LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-38

This barge carries cars from coast to coast. Accommodates only four cars, and one-way travel costs one and a half thousand rubles for a passenger car. LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-39

Once it seemed to me that only Chukchi must live in Chukotka. I spent a week here, and saw them only in pictures. In Anadyr and its vicinity there are predominantly Russians.LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-40 LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-41 LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-42

A curious fact: of all the adults with whom I spoke this week, just a couple of people was born in Chukotka.The rest came “from the mainland.”LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-43

How dare you looking at my babe?LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-44

What does this couple stare at?LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-45

Of course, at the women’s legs, and even more, at her bright clothes. People in Anadyr learned to paint houses, but have not learned to dress brightly. There is room for improvement, take an example!LR2014.06-RUS.87-Anadyr-46

 

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