Tuesday, October 02, 2007
Saturday at The Hermitage, St Petersburg
A free day in St Petersburg means a visit to The Hermitage. That magnificent palace turned-art-gallery is a national treasure and is likely the city's premier tourist attraction. This was not my first visit to The Hermitage. I had come with the Pan European Lecture tour in July of 2002 for a taste of the highlights. But after five hours there last Saturday, all I can say is *What luxury! What opulence! What history!*
Even a palace needs to be spiffied up from time to time. Above, a worker vacuums the grand staircase under the watchful eye of some Greek goddess. Most of us passersby stood and stared at this sight, struck by the irony of a noisy vacuum on the white marble stairsway. As this fellow worked his way down the steps, more photos where taken of him than of the gilding and architectural detail that surrounded him. Not that he was particularly pleased about that.
Outside on the street, an early evening view from Hermitage toward Palace Square and the Tower of Alexander.