Vasili Grossman - from traveling notes - Good to you! (2 - aya part)
I here we rose by the Semenovsky pass, the wonderful road conducting to Dilijan begins here, This road in 1928 Maxim Gorky passed. This road my aunt Rakhil Semenovna evacuated from Odessa passed in 1941. Of course, about it there is no sense to write in literary notes. Gorky is world-wide famous writer, and my aunt does not climb in literature &ndash in any way; her father Semyon Moiseevich was an insurance agent and was considered among relatives as the person limited and stupid. And the aunt, speak, did not shine with scientific achievements, studying in the Odessa private gymnasium of Lebenzon. Was considered that she inherited immunity to literature and to algebra from the father and did not resemble the mother Sofia Abramovna. But all family very much loved Rakhil Semenovnu - it was distinguished by big kindness, resignation, affability. It had hard life - she early became a widow/widower, her son Volodya, the chemist - the bacteriologist, was repressed in 1937 and died in prison, did not want to confess that poisoned wells; her daughter Nina, the girl surprisingly lovely and beautiful, finished suicide in day when she was handed an honors degree about the termination of chemical institute; her younger son Jascha was killed during cavalry attack &ndash at the front; he was a fighter - the horseman. And all her family, relatives, friends who remained in Odessa died terrible death in the village of Domaneevka where Germans took out ninety thousand Odessa Jews on execution. Travel to Dilijan of this mild woman does not climb in literary notes. Whether she began to cry, looking at strange beauty of the mountain road and having looked back to the life, or counted, smiled sadly, found some consolation and hope in this beauty? This not an essence important. I asked the satellites which of great people passed this strange road. But, of course, I also did not think to tell them: And you know, my aunt passed in the winter of 1941 » here;. There now, the car passed the Semenovsky pass. The highway goes in mountains, does sixteen spacious multikilometer rounds, will not go down to the valley yet. It is impossible to hurry &ndash here; the road is narrow, break deadly. Even the mad temperament of the Armenian drivers is not shown on this road - cars go grandly, slowly, as the reasonable beings who are afraid for the life. Slowly, strange pictures smoothly open, they arise, float by eyes, slowly disappear, and after turn on a new round appear again, begin to run, to raise, well up, but already in a little changed situation, slightly - slightly differently. And together with that picture that she is already familiar, generously appear, grow new, unprecedented a miracle. Slopes of mountains overgrew the pine wood, pines are huge, the sun did not regret the force on them. Tops of mountains are covered with snow. These tops are outlined by the smooth roundish &ndash lines; remind the sugar heads. They remind the sugar heads to people who are more senior than fifty years, - many decades plants do not let out the sugar heads wrapped up to shoulders in thick blue paper. What avaricious and simple means the nature uses to create a picture of extraordinary force. Clear winter day, snow on the mountains, pines, white, green, blue... Whether formidability of the sky and infinite copper wood, whether severe rest, whether extreme purity of &ndash paints; white color cannot be more white than this pure mountain snow, blue, than blue of the sky over this mountain snow, &ndash cannot be purer, deeper, clearer; whether the breathing smoke creeping in the valley, whether all this, connected together, creates the picture surprising on a picturesque charm, on simplicity, on internal wisdom. The person looks at this silent and clear world of crystal rest and purity, it seems to it that vanity of the vital valley is not necessary to it. The person tempted with great purity of snow tops sees a hut in the wood, he hears noise of a mountain stream, he looks at stars, they gleam between pine needles. I involuntarily began to think of all this also; how many grief I caused people, probably it is more, than people caused to me. But while I thought of loneliness on the snow mountain, our glass bus went down to the valley, ran, gathering speed, on the flat road. Obochiny Highway were covered not with snow, and liquid dirt here. The sun was reflected in dirty puddles, and nobody would suspect it that it December, - such bright and warm it was. We drove to the village, and at once there was no dream of asceticism. Lodges stood among pines, the terrask clasping them and galereyka were full childish, old man and female life: the imagination guessed times of rural year and hours of rural days, and so it is clear there was life of people in these houses, on these galereyka, at a source - and in an hour of spring dawn, and in the summer evening when man`s singing, zurna sounds, low of cows is heard, and in hot midday when old men doze in a chill, count the beads, glance at the young women going with jugs and buckets to a source. And for some reason recent thoughts caused some awkwardness, derisive lines of Sasha Cherny were remembered:
to Live at top naked, to write simple sonnets... to take
I from people from a dale bread, wine and cutlets. whether
Yes is courage in asceticism? Whether there is a courage in leaving from life? Here and suicide - leaving from life. Leaving in eternal asceticism. What it, weakness, cowardice, flight? But isn`t it? Sometimes it seems to me that suicide - it is the highest strength of the person of no character. The person was weak, lived not purely and for the sake of the lost purity and the fact that he has no he, weak, forces to live as it is necessary, died. Whether weakness it? I do not know. But we will think: whether it is easy to refuse all what the person of no character, &ndash owns; borsch with haricot, wine, the seas, love, the spring sky? Sometimes suicide seems manifestation absolutely of other forces - this despair of a being whimsical, got used to overindulgence; the person did not receive that he wanted, and he, kaprizun, considers intolerable not to have that he wants, and here he dies, leaves for offense that he was deprived of sweets, from the disappointment which passed into despair. Sometimes suicide - it is a conclusion of the superior intelligence seeing that ahead a wall, an abyss, a bog, seeing it when short-sighted and stupid potter about in the bog of hopes and optimism. Sometimes suicide - this display of a blindness, limitation; the person sees only a wall, comes to despair and does not notice in the short-sightedness that right there nearby the road, a door. And suicide &ndash is frequent; this consequence of a sincere illness become an inveterate drunkard, morfinist, people, for which both grass greens, and the sea, and the sun - everything became covered by a scab of melancholy and pain. These people voluntarily die because the world in which they live is made senseless, destroyed by them. Sometimes suicide - it is fidelity to business: that to me my life, high business to which I served died. Sometimes suicide - it is change to business: that to me a great cause if left me my adored, lovely, mild. Hermits of the twentieth century live not in cells and caves, not in forest monasteries and not in deserts. Therefore also it seems what is not present in the modern civilized world of hermits. But it not so. There is a lot of them. Their cells are disguised, they are located in the cities of the modern world, hermits serve in the ministries, work as painters. They walk in jackets, in light overcoats. But they are the same hermits who left from the world to the desert as well as what in fragmentary animal skins, in shirts, woven from dry herbs, was looked for the highest revelation in a feat of a forest privacy. Some of these hermits in a privacy of the cells repent before god of sins; others in secret verses sing freedom, love, beauty; the third, like Pimen, write chronicles, - all of them are united by what as the main thing in the life is considered not by(with) hours and affairs of everyday vanity, and lonely life in a monastery. All of them are united by the fact that serve the god in deep secret, without sharing the revelation with the world, without seeking to return from the desert to which were removed and to tell to people of light which visited them. It seems to me that on hermits of the twentieth century with the person, directly - extreme clarity also that is visible sublime and that powerless that laymen always noticed in those who retired to the desert. Hermits from densely inhabited apartments always remember a chasm that lies between destiny of the hermit for the sake of the secret truth and destiny of the preacher and prophet of this truth... City of Dilijan - wonderful city. It is the wonderful city because is not necessary on the railroad because there is no airline connecting it to the world. He is a hermit - partially, of course. Mountains saved it from ways of modern transport, the wood spryatyal it; his stone and wooden houses stand on mountain slopes among high pines. This city is full of silence, it at the same time both the city, and the village, and the housing estate. It is filled with rest, it kept in itself(himself) that lovely that was in the patriarchal not lovely past. It is not hostile to the nature, the mountain wood trustfully let in it itself; the city and the wood live together. The majority of houses in Dilijan is painted in light-blue paint, the wood does not fear the fact that these houses are built of a tree; garden trees stand near the forest tamed brothers. The prices of fruit in Dilijan cheap - it is not enough export, there is no railroad. Apples in Dilijan big, sweet, juicy... Wine on a market is a lot of, it muddy, opal, cold, sell it large bottles, decanters, mugs, glasses. It is more sellers on a market in Dilijan, than buyers. With Dilijan you fall in love at first sight. And the first thought of the fallen in love person: here, only here it is necessary to come to cure soul. Here it is possible to find rest, the world, silence, to feel a charm of evening mountains, the silent wood, the murmuring streams. But it is incorrect. Young Lermontov was wrong, having written:
... Then the alarm reconciles my soul...
Is awful, unextinguishable alarm of human soul, will not escape from it, before it both silent rural declines, and splash of the eternal sea, and the lovely city of Dilijan are powerless. And here Lermontov did not calm at Mashuk`s bottom the alarm. From a gnash of melancholy you will not escape silence, you will not cool pitch which burns down an interior, a mountain cool, you will not fill a bloody gap with life in the strange city of Dilijan. Here and the old evacuated woman, Rakhil Semenovna whether it is quiet whether she peacefully slept here, whether cried at night?. Rakhil on the children cries and does not want to be consoled because they are absent... We go to border of Azerbaijan. On the right the mountain river, at the left, at the road, &ndash rustles; the villages full to edge a rural charm, that which so pleasantly and with pleasure to admire from car windows, that which is not appreciated by the rural people which are persistently aspiring to the city. Further hills, behind them rocks rise. The wood came to an end, hills are covered with the prickly, calcinated by summer heat grass. Rocks are steep, red, it is black - brown. But the earth is straightened here, mountains run low, the steppe going to the Caspian Sea is born. Martirosyan shows me red steep stones and tells that there live wild bees. Rocks so of an otvesna that nobody could get on them yet, and the honey which is saved up by work of infinite generations of mountain bees, overflowing crevices, flows from height. But here we chose the place on the river bank. Volodya puts the center from cobble-stones, makes fire, gets mutton meat on skewers, cleans princesses, washes their bodies in the river. Ladies display a cloth at this time, fixing its edges by weighty river pebble, get an unleavened wheat cake, greens, bottles, glasses from string-bags and baskets. The ring of forks and knives mixes up with noise of the mountain river. Here we also took seat around a cloth. The shish kebab from a trout is good, the skin of princesses which charred on fire in places burst, the prince pink body is visible. I drink much, I drink more, than usually I drink. Cognac lays down clumsily, hard, the head is not filled with light spirit steam, fire does not go on a body, on cold wind fingers and ears still freeze; I do not see the nose, but I feel that it it is red - blue. I drink and I eat and all I am anxious that women on the occasion of cold wind drink too and cognac will lack two bottles. I drank much, but cognac did not work on me. So happens. You will sometimes drink hundred grams, and the world marvelously changes - an inner world and the world around, everything sounds distinctly, secret becomes obvious, in each human word there are a special sense and interest, fresh day is filled with a charm, it in everything, it concerns and pleases. And most you feel, you understand somehow in a special way, on - strange. Such happy hundred grams happen usually in the morning. And sometimes you drink, you drink and you become gloomier as if you are filled with beaten, prickly glass, you grow heavy, some lazy stupidity covers a brain and heart, knits hands, legs. And here in such cases you drink much, all you want to break to paradise, to get out of melancholy paws, of burning offense to the closest people, of causeless alarm, of a trouble presentiment... And when the person understands that to Heaven to him not to get, he drinks again. Now to become stupid, fall asleep, reach that state which ladies determine by words: Got drunk as a pig . We make a way back at sunset. The great evening silence is felt not aurally, and visually see it through bus glasses, it the ocean, and the small jingling car moves in the ocean of silence, hardly - hardly agitating its surface. The setting sun when we began to climb asphalt rounds of the road, lit tens of snow tops, and the accurate whiteness of a daylight was suddenly replaced by absolutely improbable richness of flowers and shades. It was amazing, so wonderful before: quiet evening, shadow in the valley, the pines seeming in a twilight black, and slopes and tops of mountains blue and violet, copper, pink and red, each top has the light, and all of them are connected in a wide, uniform miracle, such fine that quietly it was impossible to peer at it. This excessive, improbable beauty of mountains caused feeling bigger, than nervousness, it caused confusion of soul, almost fear. Snow tops seemed perfect in the roundish soft outlines, against the pale blue sky their color, live and pure, gentle and at the same time bright as the African flowers, hot, but given rise by the winter sun on cold snow, appear, air filled with music, and this music sounded, without breaking great silence. Such minutes there has to be something improbable, some sincere transformation of people, some basic change of everything that is in the person, and everything that is around it. And it is strange, bitter, but this expectation of transformation, giving rise to an intolerable happy voleniye, at the same time caused opposite feeling: let this intolerable picture will rather go out, let quiet twilight, lovely habitual ashes will come, paints will die; let everything will become as was, intolerable change is not necessary, let there will be usual, familiar, but not releasing, breaking bones, the novelty which is tearing apart in blood... Well, my pathetic desire was made: the African flowers withered, came twilight. We drove to the settlement, I asked to stop the car before a door of snackbar. I approached a rack where boozers made a din, waited for the turn and told: - Hundred fifty grams, three asterisks. The bartender - the Armenian who is not knowing in Russian, of course, understood my words. When I drank, he interrogatively looked at me, and I ran a finger over an empty glass, is absolutely low from a bottom, and the bartender understood me &ndash again; poured to me fifty more grams. Generally, I achieved the. Having arrived home, having reached the room, hasty undressed not to fall asleep dressed, hasty laid down not to fall asleep on a chair. Usually before going to bed I opened the &ndash window; very much our Ivan hot heated; it was well fallen down in a cool, sometimes in the sleep I heard quiet splash of the stream running under a window. But this time I did not open a window. Perhaps, from - for closeness or maybe because my heart is no good for big any more alcohol, at night I woke up. The drinking and drinking brothers of average and elderly years, you, probably, know what it, to wake up after heavy binge in the middle of the night! Quietly. Heart fights strongly, is disturbing, but does not hurt, here only the body is covered with a cool perspiration. Around everything is silent. But just because awakening is not caused by pain, it frightens, guards. Something happened, but what? There is a wish to jump, move, switch on light, to open a window, and it is for some reason terrible to poshevelnutsya, terribly to cough, have a look on lying on a chair, near a headboard, hours. Some hidden trouble filled night closeness. The feeling of extraordinary loneliness covers the person whether breath of the sleeping wife, or the person one in the room &ndash is heard by a row; it is absolutely lonely and helpless. I woke up in the middle of the night and understood that I die. Heart, appear, fought separately from me, I breathed exactly, but air in lungs was not as if I breathed only one useless nitrogen. The feeling of agonal melancholy captured me. It seemed to me that the body abandoned me, threw me - I was abandoned by my hands, legs, my lungs, heart, mine I was not in them any more, I did not feel the fingers from within as got used to feel them since the first instant of the birth, - and from the outside; I became in itself, and the body becomes itself, separately from me. I felt the pulse, I felt as palms a forehead in cold sweat, but me, me, mine I already was almost not neither in these fingers, nor in this pulse fighting under pressing of the fingers which refused to mine I in a shelter; and in a cold palm, and in a cold forehead under a palm me was less, every second all of us left more. And I in dark night closeness who is almost already thrown by the body which was slipping out, creeping out of me thought with awful glass clarity of what occurs. I died. In failure of me of my cold, sweaty breast, my pathetic moist fingers there was my end, my amba, washing the khan, my smertushka, my unprecedented destruction completely. In them - that, in these fingers, in these nails, in these armpits, appeared, and there were I. And here - that the horror also hid: I was not in the armpits, not in the snuffling nose, and in my incorporeal I with the Great ocean, with the Big Dipper, with the apple-trees blossoming in April, with love to mother, with passionate affection for relatives me, with alarm of conscience, with the books read by me with sins and weaknesses, with betkhovensky music and Vertinsky and Leshchenko`s songs, with bitter offense, shame, with pity to animals, with hatred to the destructive force of fascism, with delight before for the first time by the sea seen by me fifty years ago and with delight before the snow mountains seen eight hours ago, with offenses which I is free and involuntarily caused to people... And this incorporeal world, the incorporeal Universe which was mine I perished because my fingers, a skull, a cardiac muscle exfoliated from me, slipped out mine I . In the dark room, in stuffy darkness there was a space disaster, the elderly person died, it is far from close people, somewhere at the Turkish border. Dying, he and about the loneliness grieved - is not present close near it in whose despair, maybe, it would find a consolation: the incorporeal world will leave it a sad print in someone`s soul, in tear-stained eyes. So I lay in sweat, the free rider who is thrown out on the run from the train with the bulky baggage watched how tens of thousands of thoughts which became suddenly useless, foolish, feelings, memoirs took off for an eternal winter gloom from my filled suitcases and baskets. I died, and I noticed not at once and felt that fingers became mine again that I was in them again that heart became in me, I in it that mine I returned to the lungs breathing oxygen. I was not out of them. The skull covered with cold sweaty skin became on - habitual my warm, dry forehead... I and my body were not stratified more, again merged in one - in you. Grossman. Also it was still silent and dark, did not occur the slightest noise, the movement, I did not change position of a body, did not light fire. But the fear, melancholy was not any more, in a gloom instead of death there was life. I wanted to sleep, and I fell asleep. Here I also think - the world of contradictions, longueurs, typographical errors, waterless deserts, wise thoughts and fools, the world of sufferings, needs, work, the world of the mountain tops painted by the evening sun is beautiful. It be not so beautiful, there would be no terrible, incomparable mortal melancholy of the dying person. Therefore I so worry, rejoice, I pay, reading and considering creations of those people that connect, fasten together with the love both the validity of an everlasting peace, and the validity mortal I .
In Armenia is a lot of ancient churches, chapels, monasteries. In Armenia there is a temple Gekhard, it is cut down in the rock - the miracle which is given rise in a stone. This miracle is made by thirty years` work of the person possessing not only titanic talent, but also titanic belief. The person who cut down the harmonious, grandiose, graceful temple in the mountain cut on a word grabara: Remember me in the prayer . The highway surrounded in the flowers is laid from Yerevan to Echmiadzin - to the town in which there is a residence of the Catholicos of all Armenians Vazgen the First where there is a fine cathedral, the monastery, seminary. The person constantly works the long millennia on the earth, creates objects and cultural wealth. Many created by the person amazes descendants with the grace, grandness, wealth, complexity, courage, gloss, grace, mind, poetry. But only some creations of the person are perfect, and it is not much of them - these truly perfect creations are noted by either grandness, or splendor, or excessive grace. Sometimes perfection is shown in verses of the great poet, not in his all verses though all verses it are noted by the genius; but only about two, three can be told: these verses are really perfect. Nothing should be added to these words. Music, part of music can be perfect. The mathematical reasoning, physical experience and the physical theory, the plane screw turned by the turner a detail, work of the glass blower, the jug created by the potter can be perfect. It seems to me that ancient Armenian churches and chapels are constructed absolutely. Perfection is always simple, always naturally, perfection is the deepest understanding of an essence and its fullest expression, perfection is the shortest way to the purpose, the simplest proof, the clearest expression. Perfection is always noted by democratic character, perfection is public. It seems to me that the perfect theory will be apprehended by the school student that perfect music is available not only to perception of people, but also perception of wolves, dolphins, ears, frogs that perfect verses can sink down in heart and the quarrelsome bitch of the woman. The Armenian church expresses the simple shape that in its walls there lives god of shepherds, beauties, scientists, old women, athletes, masons, god of all people. You understand it at once, hardly in transparent mountain air from a distance you will catch sight of it standing on the mountain simple as Newton`s thought, young as though it only yesterday, but arose here, on not one and a half thousand years ago - human God`s, on - God`s human. It seems, the child put this church from basalt cubes, it is so childly simple and natural. These churches are perfect, but I had a feeling that in the Armenians who constructed these perfect churches there lives the spirit of paganism. So it seems to me, I did not see believers neither in the village, nor in the city, but I saw executing a ceremony. Believers are felt, but not seen and heard. I saw many rural old men and old women - and in them I did not feel belief. In Armenia there are a lot of ruins of pagan temples, any of them did not remain, did not pass test of two millennia. But the spirit of paganism remained, the spirit of paganism did not address in ruins, it passed test of the millennia. You feel this spirit as well as spirit of Christianity, you feel it not in the sermon, not in the word, not in a prayer. And here in how Armenians drink wine, eat meat, bake bread, celebrate ceremonies, in their gait, in their songs, in their laughter I felt spirit of paganism though the Armenian churches are fine, and pagan temples lie in ruins. Under an Echmiadzin Cathedral altar the ancient pagan temple was found several years ago. Excavation opened the huge altar cut from an integral block of basalt. It is a gloomy flat copper with roughly prosechenny trenches for a blood drain. The sizes of an altar are very big; it seems, it the most powerful modern tractor, the tank will not get moving forward. In a stone gloom of a vault everything breathes ancient cruelty. What sacrifice was made on this dark stone whose blood ran on this trench? The young educated and educated monk who secretly brought us into the pagan pagan temple crafty and cleverly smiled. Surprising symbolics: the Christian cathedral which grew over the pagan temple. When we rose upward, in a cathedral, in an altar the corpulent black-eyed priest christened the child. Holding the gospel in the left hand, it shipped an aspergillum in a massive silver font, the right hand it splashed holy water of the newborn. The priest quickly, muffledly, drawlingly read words of the sacred book. His legs were above a black pagan altar - the frowned arch of the pagan temple became a sole of a Christian altar. Generations of Catholicoses whose bodies are buried under marble at an entrance to a cathedral, served church service, glorifying Christ, not knowing the fact that under their legs the sacrificial pagan stone gloomy hid... But the spirit of paganism did not hide, did not die, he lives in the Armenian villages, in drunk ancient stories and songs, in skeptical wisdom of old men, in mad flashes of jealous men, in madness of lovers, in ingenuous salty judgments of old women, in glorification of a grapevine and a peach tree, in carnivorous fidelity to the knife cutting a lamb in the popular wisdom which saved up the thousand-year experience not in the sacred book, and in a difficult life, in a cheerful cup in embraces of the woman. The spirit of paganism proves not only on vineyards and pastures. It and in rural houses where never you will see icons where there is no humility where old men drink strong grape moonshine, chestnut gold of cognac. The spirit of paganism rises to the God`s doors of the house where bring lambs into holidays, bring cockerels and hens, cut them, poor, at a gate of church in glory of Christian god. Almost on all church yards, at the operating churches and at those that are turned into reserves the earth is covered with blood of sacrificial animals, the chicken heads, feathers and down roll. The sacrificed animals right there near church cook, fry on ugolyakh, right there treat with sacrificial meat of passersby of people. The spirit of paganism lives in the old, written on thousand-year parchment books treating about heliocentricism, about sphericity of the earth, about a love charm. These books are written in language of the people which lived on the earth several millennia, adopted Christianity for six hundred years before Russians, but held in remembrance wisdom, nobility, kindness of the pagan people existing long before Christ`s Christmas. This memory exempted Armenians from religious intolerance, from cruelty of fanaticism. The true good is alien to a form and formal, is indifferent to objectification in a ceremony, in image, does not look for a reinforcement in dogma; it where is kind human heart. We examined the Echmiadzin Cathedral, gifts presented to god by Armenians - the millionaires living abroad. At an exit from a cathedral we saw the secretary of the Catholicos who was seeing off the next American guest. The secretary, the ordinary-looking young man in a civil jacket, seated the American in inturistsky Volga also approached us. As well as always, I understood nothing from Martirosyan`s conversation with the secretary. It seemed to me lawful that the translator with Armenian waits for until the author whom he translates, explains to him in Russian about what there was the Armenian speech. I translated according to the word-per-word translation. And it was talked that Martirosyan asked the secretary to report on the Catholicos on the and my arrival, to learn whether it will be able to accept us. We expected the answer, standing in the middle of the church yard. I felt nervousness. Never in life I had to meet the highest ecclesiastic, the patriarch of church. And all what was seen for the first time in life always concerns; whether it be new city, new sea, in a new way special person. The Catholicos, of course, was for me a person in a new way, in a special way unusual. But as people for some reason can hesitate and even to be ashamed of the natural nervousness and many simple and natural feelings, I waiting for arrival of the patriarchal secretary joked and laughed, deceitfully showing to Martirosyan, conversations with leaders of church are how habitual for me. And Martirosyan frowned: do not accept us Vazgen the First, it would be unpleasant to Martirosyan before me; he two times spoke to me about the kind relations with kyatolikosy - it would turn out that he boasted. But here from - under red the arch conducting in patriarshyyu the residence there was a secretary and by the voice murmuring, deprived of shades told that the Catholicos waits for us. Martirosyan ceased to frown and smiled, I ceased to smile and frowned. We passed under an arch and saw a big and lovely garden. Among high autumn flowers there was an arbor. I imagined how in evening hour drinks coffee and « here; gutarit clergy. But I did not manage to think about what the clergy gutarit, we entered a reception of the Catholicos. I lost after flu sense of smell and therefore, unfortunately, only visually apprehended this room with quite low ceiling, with the walls decorated with engravings with ancient furniture which modern young people, having inherited, immediately throw out, replacing streamline and compact. And in acceptance, probably, there was a lovely smell of a cypress tree, an incense, heated wax and dry cornflowers. I expected these smells the same as the Chekhovian boy believed that suitcases of the uncle of the general are filled by gunpowder and bullets. But I did not manage to ask whether the smell of a cypress tree was really felt in a reception, we were invited to Vazgen the First, the Catholicos of all Armenians. In the spacious, light office full of fine precious things, pictures, magnificently published books, the corpulent person of years of fifty with the black turning gray beard, in a black silk cassock sat at the huge desk which is filled up with manuscripts and books. The face of the Catholicos smiled, his very kind dark eyes smiled, moist full lips smiled. Simplicity of its cassock testified not to asceticism, and to refinement. We got acquainted, laughing and smiling each other. Martirosyan and I took seat in chairs at the little table put perpendicularly to a desk. Probably, I laughed slightly more loudly, than follows, and smiled excessively joyfully. It was valid, unclear why I declared the look such pleasure from a meeting with the Catholicos. The pale servant dressed in mouse color a jacket and trousers brought coffee in small cups, cognac in thin symbolical liqueur glasses, a box of chocolates. We silently watched several moments how the servant puts an entertainment on a table, and could seem that my proceeding joyful smile belongs to cognac and chocolates. The chair of the Catholicos had a monk in a black cassock and in the black peaked hood covering a forehead. I heard that many monks in Echmiadzin are extraordinary beautiful, but, probably, I did not imagine before looked on this monk what is man`s beauty. This monk was really fantastically beautiful! It was not beautiful candy, false beauty, its beauty was demonic. It it is yellow - the brown shining eyes, the nose, lips, pale cheeks and a forehead connected in drawing extraordinary fine, but haughty, proud. The chair of the Catholicos had some sharp contradiction between the humility pose accepted by it and his bad beauty. The Catholicos friendly raised the liqueur glass and pronounced several words, tasted cognac. I honestly drank. Martirosyan peroared to me words of the patriarch: he drank for my health, he was glad to get acquainted with me. Conversation began. We spoke about literature. The Catholicos told me that he not only read, but also studied Dostoyevsky that serious and deep knowledge of human soul, the chelovekovedeniye is impossible without Dostoyevsky`s studying. He told that he published work about Dostoyevsky, but, unfortunately, cannot ask me to read it - it is written in Romanian to a time when Vazgen was the bishop Bucharest. Then the Catholicos told me that the most favourite by him the writer Lev Tolstoy. It did not seem to me strange that everything passes, - the church anathematized Tolstoy in due time. Then the Catholicos started talking about the writers writing about Armenians and history of the Armenian people. Then it became clear that the Catholicos did not read my books. Then the Catholicos asked about my Armenian impressions. I told about fine ancient tserkva of Armenia. I told that I would like that books were as these &ndash churches; constructed avariciously, expressively - and that in each book as in church, there lived god. But, apparently, I to the only thing liked my words - the Catholicos listened to me with an indifferent soft smile. I have a look at the monk standing at Vazgen`s chair. It seemed, he did not hear our conversation. I suddenly noticed that from - under its black cassock fashionable shoes from brown suede, nylon patten socks are visible. Then conversation went between the Catholicos and Martirosyan. I did not understand words, conversation went on - Armenian. But it seems to me, I understood which - that besides conversation. It was conversation two clever, well-mannered, knowing life and the everyday relations of the people, conversation of the people appreciating a joke, appreciating each other and it is sincerely good, being respectful to each other. I did not see the torch burning. I thought: often it is necessary to read and hear that people before a meeting with the famous person worry, and having hardly met him, calm down; it appears, the famous person is simple, kind, lovely as well as all simple, kind and lovely people. But to the Catholicos I had another. Having taken away that Einstein is lovely and simple, the interlocutor does not call in question his genius. Vazgen the First was lovely, simple, kind to me, but my nervousness took place because I met the acquaintance, and it seemed to me that I will meet unfamiliar. I sat full of everyday vanity and remembered details of our conversation, remembered the different pustyakovina accompanying conversation and I did it, meaning my story to the Moscow friends how I drank coffee, talked about Dostoyevsky and Tolstoy to the Catholicos of all Armenians - Vazgen the First. I as if would review theatrical representation. We said goodbye. The handsome the monk in a black hood saw off us to the car. He went near Martirosyan and about something, laughing, spoke with it. It was not on a scene any more. And I thought: it is a pity that we were not photographed with Vazgen, well I told about literature and churches. We passed by the blind beggar. His face was sad, Iov`s face; we passed by the peasant conducting to a cathedral on a rope a sheep, it was awful in touching and obedient expectation of death. I looked at the handsome of the monk going nearby, - god of kindness and compassion did not concern his marvelous look: it, laughing, passed by the whispering old man and a helpless, fateful animal. One and a half months later after this meeting I went on a visit to the stoker Ivan, I wanted to get acquainted with his father, Alexey Mikhaylovich. In the winter evening we went on the filled-up snow, to abrupt streets of Tsakhkadzor. Snow in high mountains some special, extraordinary fluffy, extraordinary easy. Ivan was silent, I was silent. Something to me it became dullish. It was difficult to walk on a snow virgin soil, I began short wind. We went down on very abrupt and very long street, and I began to miss: it is necessary to climb on the way back uphill deep snow. At last, having stepped through the semi-tumbled-down wattle fence, we entered the yard, passed by indecisively brekhnuvshy doggie, by sarayushka which - as put from a rusty tin and old boards. On us dokhnut heat of a sheep zakut. In an outer entrance hall the feeling of mountains, Armenia, Araks, the Turkish border suddenly left. Everything was extraordinary Russian, rural: and a floor under legs, both the twilight of an outer entrance hall, and a flank for water, and a tin mug on the bucket covered with a fanerka. Then we entered the room. My God my God, here it, rural Russia, Kursk, Oryol. The big Russian furnace, not colored benches in a corner, not crumpled bed with not crumpled pillows. Rural Russia, that that slightly - slightly feels on itself breath of Ukraine. Russia that borders in Lgovshchina on Glukhovshchina, on Orel region on Sumy, in Voronezhshchina on Svatov and Chepel`s steppes. This breath of Ukraine affects in bleached kreydy walls, in an earth floor, in a patten ryadn a wall over a bed, in the device of an outer entrance hall. But it was not breath of Ukraine, Armenia concerned the Russian log hut. Russian log hut. I do not know whether its variety and uniformity, its evolution and its immense conservatism are studied. I do not know whether there are works about the Russian &ndash furnace; about tens or maybe hundreds of its shapes existing in Russia. Here they, the Volga, Volga furnaces, Kamyshin, Saratov, all on one sample, under the iron mathematical law similar. Who remembers the master who created them? He did not write anywhere: Remember my name in the prayer . And how many bread, how many Russian cabbage soup how many live heat its furnaces gave rise. And suddenly the kingdom of the Volga furnaces breaks, the kingdom of Voronezh began. The same, and all in a new way, differently - both laying, and flue, and stove bench. Other master created the law here, expressed the character, but also he did not dare to write: Remember my name in the prayer . And here go Kursk, Oryol, they suddenly begin, reign, govern, bake and - suddenly - break, run low. Some invisible ataman unites areas and areas under a banner of the special shape of the Russian furnace. There is a border, and here the new oven ataman creates furnaces just like the. And sweat they, northern huts - Vyatka, Arkhangelsk, Vologda. And somewhere in Eastern Siberia, in the Far and the most Far East the person will unexpectedly gasp: yes it is our Poltava, Volynsk furnaces, here and pripechek ours, and our stove bench. How not to reflect: immigrants through thousands of creaking telezhny, slow versts carefully carried by an image of the furnace, hundreds of years defended it from a constant impact of other, new influences, from the modernist, decadent, pagan centers. And maybe, in Canada or in the Ukrainian settlements in Brazil the same law of the furnace, the law of a felling, the law of an outer entrance hall, roofs. I was told by one our minindelets what in the jungle of Amazon the old woman the semi-Indian suddenly proshamkat a toothless mouth, addressing the daughter-in-law: Zachini of a vindova, bo childrinyata zailiyut . Stability of the sincere world, character, stability of the speech, stability of habits, customs, household objects resists to power of ocean open spaces, the equatorial heat, tropical thickets, decades and the centuries lasting, the interfering others, bright, noisy life. Here and in Armenia I saw great firmness of the Russian furnace, the Russian log hut, Russian porch, the Russian outer entrance hall. I thought: not in the furnace here business, not in chuguna, and in a deep essence of people, not in a log hut force; force is that in this log hut there lived Ivan. And Ivan said on - Armenian so that Armenians envied his huge dictionary, its pronunciation, his knowledge of shades of rural dialects, richness of the Armenian words, introductions, humourous catchphrases which he knew a set. Martirosyan told me that he considers the Armenian speech of Ivan perfect. Ivan was on friendly terms only with Armenians, drank with Armenians, went shooting with Armenians, ate hash and the Armenian Saviour. But here we entered a log hut, and I got acquainted with friendly and beautiful Nyura, Ivan`s wife. On the furnace white-headed children of Ivan sat: two boys, two girls. Children were not the noisy, not indulged, their light faces turned to me. We started talking about fairy tales, and children is sensible and seriously joined in a conversation on Ivan - the tsarevitch, about Ivan the Fool, about Heat - a bird, about the brother Ivanushke and the sister Alyonushka. And somehow in the mountains of Armenia these children on furnaces, their linen white heads, their eyes and lovely serious conversation on the Russian fairy tales in a special way were touching. Some they were very nice silent, but not shy. And near the furnace there was Ivan and looked at the children with such tenderness and love which I did not assume in him. And for me these children, both the Russian fairy tales, and this log hut, and Ivan living in it &ndash united; the person, whose father, both the grandfather, and the great-grandfather spent the century in the mountains of Armenia. But here the room was entered by Ivan`s parents - old man Alexey Mikhaylovich and old woman Maria Semenovna. It were rural old people - the gray-haired, broad-shouldered, dark-faced peasant in poor, paper, strongly shabby jacket, in a shirt with white buttons, in the paper, patched on a lap trousers filled in kersey boots. And his old woman, Maria Semenovna, was the Russian rural old woman whose wrinkled face, the bent shoulders, big brown hands spoke about long life and hard continuous work. We got acquainted and sat down at a table. Alexey Mikhaylovich, seeing my interest in itself, frowned and, appear, felt shy. And in a minute we already carried on conversation on what interested it above all: about love to people, about the truth and a lie, about the good and evil. And from the first words of Alexey Mikhaylovich, looking in his face, in his eyes, listening its difficult, inconsistent, semiliterate muzhichyyu to the speech, I felt what did not feel in rooms of the Catholicos, - obsession, desire to convince all people to feel and think on - correct. He said sorrowfully that people do not want to follow the main law of life - to wish what you wish yourself, all people without withdrawal, without distinction of a nationality, without distinction of belief and disbelief... You do not wish bad to yourself, you do not do bad to yourself - do not wish bad, do not do bad to people. You want to yourself good, here and wish to people good. He spoke about it worrying, stammering, looking for words, having reddened; on his face sweat acted, and it several times wiped a forehead a scarf, and sweat all acted. Some special force was in these words - they were said not by the priest in the temple, they were said by the old man in a filthy jacket, the man on whose shoulders hard everyday work, the man living in a close, stuffy log hut lay. But neither weight of life, nor weight of work could do anything with its sincere force. The old woman the wife and the daughter-in-law attentively listened to it and from time to time put in a ward: they spoke with the same serious and deep interest in kindness of people and in truthfulness of their life what was also in Alexey Mikhaylovich. And in all that Alexey Mikhaylovich said what women agreed with that Ivan and children who became silent on the furnace attentively listened there was neither sincere exaltation, nor religious obsession, - it were simple words that it is necessary to feel sorry for all people, to wish them the same what you wish yourself. It were words from life, but not from the sermon, the word from that life that went in a poor log hut, in an everyday hard work. Also these words without pouchitelstvo and haughtiness, and with grief that so all it does not seem simply were pronounced, and there can well live people, under the law of kindness and the truth, continually break. To me it was very much remembered that Alexey Mikhaylovich, speaking about bad people, about a lie, about slander, about rage human, condemned nobody, and only frowning quietly said: It is vain, it superfluous . Then we with Ivan drank vodka, had a snack on crumpled pickles, ate Armenian hash, ate boiled chicken. And to Alexey Mikhaylovichu Nyura gave to tea with bread. Peele it is tea and ate bread with some guilty look, without being proud of the sanctity, and as if hesitating to show it to people. I asked it, what does he think of murder of animals, and he told: - What you will do, it is visible, not to do people without it, and to go shooting here for an entertainment - it is vain, it superfluous. He looked at the son, sighed, told: - Ivan, Cruel at me. And Ivan told nothing, too sighed. The more we spoke, the my nervousness became stronger. I did not notice trifles, was not curious, I was seriously captured by feeling, unexpected for me. Surprisingly happens - the person is well-known, blessed with the great gift, perhaps even the genius, it is the most ordinary, ordinary on the temper. Gift it is separated from his soul. And somehow at once it becomes indifferent that this ordinary, average little man somewhere there - in laboratory, whether on a scene of opera theater, or in the surgical operating room, or composing compositions - shows the endowments. But happens worse - when the person, understanding that from him at a meeting wait for some unusual internal lines and qualities, and knowing that he does not possess them, begins to pose, utter prophecies, to coquet. It happens to people talented, but fallen short of the highest line. And here was so - brought abrupt streets snow, it became very difficult to go on them, especially it was difficult for me with my short wind, and I was annoyed with myself and regretted that agreed to go on a visit to Ivan and his father, the invention seemed vain, boring, better I would have supper in the House of writers, played on billiards, read the « magazine; Abroad . Then there were lovely, touching impressions of the Russian furnace, white-headed children, thoughts of the Russian character, that the log hut expresses an invariance of the Russian person speaking on - Armenian it is not worse than silver-tongued orators of Armenians. Then I sat at a table with old, badly competent man in a greasy jacket and in kersey boots, and that nervousness of heart which did not take place in many cases of my life captured me. There was neither Armenia, nor Russia, there were no thoughts of national character, and there was a soul of the person, here that that was anxious, suffered, trusted among stone taluses and vineyards of Palestine, that soul that it is properly good also in the Penza small village, and under the sky of India, and in a polar yaranga, good is everywhere in people because they are people. This soul, this belief lived in the illiterate old man, and it was simple as his life, his bread, without uniform magnificent word, without high sermon, and my eyes were filled with tears from the fact that I suddenly understood power of this soul turned not to heavenly god, and to people, understood that Alexey Mikhaylovich cannot live without this belief in good and kindness turned to people as he cannot live without bread and water and that it without fluctuating will go to God death agony, to the most terrible termless penal servitude for the sake of it. There is a gift the highest, than the gift living in geniuses of science and literature, in poets and scientists. Is among gifted, talented much, and sometimes and ingenious virtuosos of a mathematical formula, poetic line, the musical phrase, a cutter and brush of people sincerely weak, small, lakeystvuyushchy, mercenary, envious, mollusks - slugs in whom the alarm of conscience irritating them promotes and accompanies the pearls birth. The highest gift human is gift of sincere beauty, generosity and nobility, personal from the lever for good. It is gift of anonymous, timid knights, soldatushka whose feat of people does not become an animal.
invited Me to a wedding - Martirosyan`s nephew married. The groom was a driver, the bride - shop assistant of a selmag. It was necessary to go far, to Talinsky district, to the southern slope of Mount Aragats. I doubted whether to go to me, - since evening to me it nezdorovitsya strongly, and I, like the swimmer who is not trusting in the forces was afraid to sail far from the native coast. But when phone rang out in the morning and Martirosyan told me that the Yerevan delegation - it, Violetta Minasovna and Hortensius - already drove up to hotel and waits for me, I made the decision. Soon our glass bus ran on the highway. In the bus the breakfast was arranged: Martirosyana`s houses did not manage to eat. I for fear to disturb the dozed-off animal did not touch food, only took a coffee sip from a thermos. To the left of us the Ararat valley lay, tops of Big and Small Ararat rose, snow slopes of Aragats were piled up on the right. On both sides of the road stone fields, bones of the dead of mountains were spread. The road is always interesting. It seems to me that the movement does interesting any road. I do not know uninteresting roads. Our road went in space and in time - we went by silent thousand-year temples and chapels, by the stiffened ruins once noisy a caravan - a shed, by settlements where antennas of TVs stuck out, we looked at the mountain on which Ache escaped from a flood, and having turned the head to the right, we looked at the mountain where there are Ambartsumyan`s reflectors investigating a structure of the far Universes. The stone scattering in the valley reminded Ararat and Aragats that everything on light passes: once these prostrate stones were same mighty, in white caps, and now are turned into dead skeletons. In Armenia, perhaps, I did not see such stone hopelessness, as in mountain valleys of Aragats anywhere. I do not even know how to transfer this improbable feeling: a stone in three dimensions - in breadth, deep into, up. Only stone, only one stone. No, not in three dimensions there was a stone, the stone expressed also the fourth coordinate of the world - time coordinate. Movement of parades, paganism, ideas of the modern world were expressed in a stone of Ararat, in basalt walls of temples, in gravestones, in harmonous buildings of clubs, palaces of culture, schools - ten-year schools, in developments of pits and ore veins. But soon around there was only a prostrate, valley stone - bones and skeletons of the mountains which died during last geological eras. But when became clearly that ahead only one stone bones of the mountains which died tens millions years ago we drove to the village where the young driver celebrated a wedding with the pretty girl, the shop assistant from a selmag. I was warned that villages on Aragats the poorest in Armenia: until recently bureaucrats demanded delivery of meat, wool, grapes from the stone fields adjoining to collective farms. But it is impossible to reap wine from a stone, it is impossible to turn basalt into mutton meat. Only recently taxes on a stone were removed, collective farms began to be responsible only for bald patches of the convenient earth. The glass bus slowly went on the stone street of the stone village, among the stone, grown into a stone and grown from a stone huts. From a hut stone fences reached for a hut. Long trenches for a watering place were hollowed from a massive stone; near huts there were barrels hollowed from a stone, basalt troughs for washing, basalt sheep feeders. The centers were hollowed in a stone. Steps, porches - everything was stone. The housing and household utensils were created from basalt. It seemed, the Stone Age proceeded here. Wind bore down the street stone dust. But sounds of radio music said that the century of electronics came. Along stone streets there were stone columns, wires of electric lighting reached for huts of the Stone Age. We drove up to especially poor lodges which were above stone break. Waited for us. Burst a drum, flutes played. From touching, it is shrill - sad voices of wedding flutes the soul &ndash faded; among stones there lived people. The groom`s mother, the high old woman, embraced Martirosyan, they kissed and began to cry. They cried not because the son married and left mother, they cried because the losses, sufferings which dropped out on a share of Armenians are incalculable because it is necessary to cry about terrible death of close people during the Armenian slaughter because is not present in the world of pleasure which could force to forget national suffering, to forget the native earth lying on that side of Ararat. And the drum rattled victoriously, deafeningly, the face of the big-nosed drummer was inevitably cheerful: whatever there was, life goes on, life of the people going on the stone earth. The crowd of peasants surrounded us. Martirosyan acquainted me with the sister and with her husband - the old man in the green soldier`s blouse girded by a soldier`s belt with a copper metal plate and a five-pointed star. The groom`s father, the old man with sad eyes was very poorly dressed. But the metal plate with a star glinted in the sun, probably, it was polished before a wedding. I shook hands tens, all wanted to get acquainted with the friend of the writer Martirosyan. Under the open sky there was a table. We were brought to it and suggested to be drunk and had a snack. Unfamiliar ceremonies and folk customs cause always respect, I always feel fear, even horror at thought that I can offend people, without having executed their any custom. How will look at the rural people on my refusal to accept an entertainment of parents of the groom? I drank a glass of grape vodka, have a snack on green pepper and a piece of mutton. Not to break custom, I drank the second glass of vodka and again have a snack on the green soaked tomato it ognenno - cutting that there was a wish to take still a sip of strong &ndash vodka; to calm it tomato fire. And drink in Armenia - fire of pepper extinguish vodka fire, fire of vodka extinguish pepper fire. My perception of the world made marvelous jump &ndash up; I saw the faces lit not only light of the sun, but also internal own luminescence. Characters of people became clear to me. My love and trust to people enormously increased. I as if from the auditorium of life would pass to a scene. The feeling of a habit, commonness abandoned me. I was full of nervousness, surprises, - what blue sky over the head what clean, cool air, as snow at tops of mountains, what pleasure and grief in wedding music shine. The people who crowded at the house of parents of the groom freely, easily entered the most intimate depth of my soul, I felt their great hard work, their wrinkles, their gray hair, young derisive curiosity of beautiful and ugly girls, mighty souls and strange simplicity of toilers. I felt, I understood their honesty, their kindness, their good feeling to me. I was at home, among the. We entered the stone room. Walls, a ceiling, a floor were put from a big stone. Breath of the Iron Age hardly concerned ancient, thousand-year utensils: vessels, storages of grain, oil, wine, the center showed pictures of the Stone Age. We left to the yard again. Directly before me the snow top of Big Ararat shone on the sun. Not only feelings, but also my thoughts extraordinary became aggravated. The set of the associations capable to arise around Ararat, the main mountain of mankind, the mountain of belief, suddenly pryanut in my brain. I saw black fast waters of a Flood, I saw the sinking sheep, donkeys, the heavy square-tipped launch which is heavily floating on water. I saw rescued we Ache animals and bloody slaughterhouses on which descendants of Nov killed descendants of these animals. But I not only thought of the bible mountain. I enjoyed its beauty thoughtlessly, it shone in all the growth, it was not covered by houses of Yerevan, a smoke of factory pipes, clouds and fog of the Ararat valley. From a stone sole to the white head there was it lit with the morning sun. She participated in today`s life, she participated in life of last millennia. It connected today`s wedding with the flutes sounding here three thousand years ago. Everything passes, nothing passes... We were hurried - it was necessary to go for the bride, to her village there were eighteen kilometers. The wedding train consisted of two trucks and our glass bus. Youth, standing in bodies of trucks, danced, sang, without restraint swung fried hens, round white bread, skewers on which the shish kebab was got, at some dancers in hands trophy German dirks and daggers &ndash gleamed; apples were got on their edge, and on the sparkling edges words were engraved: Alles fur Deutschland! Stridently flutes sounded, doldonit drums, but around there were nobody to admire richness of the wedding train, the flat, blind and deaf stone lay everywhere. The gloomy stone deficiency gave some special force to fun - it was the call. The human race proceeded - wedding flutes and drums laughed at a stone. And here we drive to the village of the bride. Boys, having left Murilyo`s cloths, black-eyed and chernokudry, run behind our cars. Fences have audience. With a double force the arrived youth, in bodies of cars storms. It - ceremonial wedding fun, same as ceremonial tears on a funeral. For minutes of the face of merry fellows become gloomy and anxious. They have fun as they work, excessively. The crowd which dammed the street is from a distance visible; we drive up to the house of the bride. Music plays, there are only no cameramen and press photographers - our exit from the bus reminds arrival in Vnukovo on the powerful liner of the government of the friendly country. Old men warmly greet us, two hands shake hands. Tomtoms beat. And here we enter the house of the bride. Rural, mountain, true Armenian poverty proinventarizirovat in the house of a wall, window, all objects. And against this poverty with some extraordinary conviviality the tables extended across and along the spacious room look. On tables there are tens of the bottles and decanters full of muddy white wine and yellowish grape vodka. On tables greens, fish, fried mutton, gingerbreads, nuts. The groom and the bride sit next, at each toast they get up. The groom in a new checkered coat and a checkered cap. It has a red, weather-beaten face, rough, big-nosed. On a sleeve at it a red bandage, as at the combatant promoting militia. The bride is very pretty, long eyelashes cover her looked down in the earth. When address it, she is silent, does not raise eyes. On the head its wreath with a white veil. It, as well as the groom, is dressed in a coat. A coat on it new, light-blue, she holds in hand light-a blue handbag. After each toast guests carelessly threw ruble pieces of paper into the plate standing near musicians. Some threw green, blue pieces of paper; time or two on a plate laid down red tens. And all this occurs, as they say, in a new standard of price. This competition in generosity when ordering music gives to musicians thousand earnings. Even in the Yerevan newspapers it was written that this musical auction at rural weddings for a long time knocks out the people from the budget. Musicians try not to look at the pieces of paper sliding in a plate. But it is necessary to look, and from time to time flutes and a drum quickly glance at expensive plate, glance surprisingly bright eyes. Wedding tables clearly show the human attitudes, stratification, professions, patrimonial and related communications. At a table ninety-year-old rural old men, they on - young drink, laugh - they from the village of Sasun well-known for the dancers and singers, they are David Sasunsky`s descendants. At a table peasants in poor jackets, in soldier`s soldier`s blouses, kitelka, their wives in a dark, old-womanish chintz. At a table two regional chiefs, red-faced and self-assured, in moskvoshveevsky suits, their full-chested wives are dressed in identical brightly - blue dresses. At a table the Yerevan dandies in trousers a pipe and the Yerevan thin maidens - women of fashion in &ndash nylon; they are students, graduate students, employees scientifically - research institutes. At a table the employee of the Central Committee of party in a blue jacket and a red tie. At a table the famous Armenian writer Martirosyan, his wife. At a table state-farm mechanics, drivers, tractor operators, bricklayers and carpenters, mostly young people, mighty addition children. All these people are strongly connected by relationship and an association. This communication forever. Its durability is checked in the millennia. The feast at parents of the bride passes nervously, every time rises the chief best man of the groom - it is called godfather - also it is angry, almost roughly demands that the bride was released to the village of the groom - long ago it is time for it to be there. On the godfather the bride`s relatives angrily snatch. This dispute only half real-life, partially it is ceremonial. But the wedding really left the schedule and therefore the godfather is angry very naturally, without game. Godfather - this is the commander-in-chief of a wedding, at him on a sleeve, as well as at the groom, a wide red sling. On it such number of difficult, difficult cases and duties that his face looks not on - wedding anxiously, is frowned, as at the plant manager who is not implementing the plan. To it not to jokes. Only occasionally he bethinks and hasty, forcedly smiling, drinks a glass, again plunges into cares. - It is necessary to go, it is necessary to go! - he shouts and shows for hours. Said to me that the godfather bought for a wedding table on the money seventy kilograms of chocolates. His thick dark face is full of determination. It is visible that it will not recede, will not finish business yet. The wedding is so difficult, populous also multivoices that in the coats which decided to get married almost absolutely forget about young people. However, when the requirement of the godfather, his deputies, adherents and supporters at last was satisfied and the bride began to say goodbye to a native home, the touching grief of these minutes captured all participants of a feast. The bride cried - it was no ceremony any more, it were human tears. Honestly, as considerably as all events were touching. The girl left the house of the parents, she went to the house of the groom. I saw her new house - a stone close room with a low ceiling, with a small window, on a mountain slope. The stone, a stone, and on weekdays there is not present a rain, and on holidays there is no rain. And then the human soul, its nervousness and grief were again covered with a ceremony. The bride was not let out from the house. Representatives and agents of the godfather bribed money of the boys who surrounded the girl in a blue coat with a blue handbag in hands, in white satin shoes. Boys are bribe takers, clamping in fists triple and the five - at one I saw ten, - parted, let pass to the bride. As the blue shape of the bride, a blue handbag, shoes walking to our glass bus, to that life that expected this girl did not approach. Mother gave it, saying goodbye, a white chicken, a white plate, a red ruddy apple... And at this time under a thunder of drums, under shrill sounds of pipes loading of a dowry on the truck began. The truck purposely did not approach the house: let the people will better make out objects. The first there were ninety-year-old drunk aged men, they bore the bride`s suitcases on the head, they sang and danced. Behind them mighty people moved, highly holding a new mirror case, a table, the sewing machine on the raised hands. Women and children bore chairs. The combined orchestra rang out, friends bore the nickelized bed with a spring mattress. Probably, jokes of collective farmers were salty the audience, laughing, shook the heads, girls and women looked down. When the bride surrounded with crowd of the women representing the groom approached the bus, the boy of years of fifteen ran up to one of women, oblapit it and kissed. Furious men snatched on it, in a moment the face of the guy was covered with blood. I thought at once that the boy got drunk to madness, and punishment of it seemed to me excessively cruel. But right there explained to me that it the wedding ceremony &ndash was made; the boy was the bride`s brother, he wanted to kiss one of the women who arrived from the village of the groom as if revenging for the sister. It was the ceremony, convention, but what cruel ceremony what rough. And suddenly I saw: the bride raised tear-stained eyes on the brother, the boy with a bloodstained face and eyes, wet from tears, looked at the sister. Their tear-stained eyes smiled each other - it was the love smile. And at once at heart it became so joyful, so warmly, so sadly. We got on a glass bus again. The groom and the bride sat next. They sat as unfamiliar, with the stiffened persons, never for all road peremolvivshis the word, having never had a look at each other. Over stone bones of mountains the sun set. Some geological chasm of times dokhnut from the huge muddy star full dim fire. Smoky, red light was above red stones. We returned to the villagenikha in the dark. Stars were above our head, the southern, Armenian stars, those that were above Ararat when the bible was not written yet, that there were above the high snow mountains which are nowadays lying a powerless skeletal scattering those that will stand when Ararat and Aragats lay down the dead of a kostma, will be scattered in ashes. To me this night was very much remembered. In the dark we slowly went on the village; in the middle of the street the laid table grew white. When we approached it, is dazzling automobile headlights on a peasant house roof &ndash flashed; there lived the groom`s uncle, and we had to accept his entertainment. His sons - drivers - established automobile headlights on a roof. In this projector world we laughed, wished good luck to young people. Then, again zakhlebnuvshis in blue darkness, we went along the rural street to the growing white laid table - the godfather prepared a food for a wedding train. And here at last we were included into the rural club not similar to the brilliant palaces of culture from a pink tufa erected in rural areas of the Ararat valley, Sevan, Hrazdan. A stone barrack with a dark timbered ceiling. Along walls there were tables, guests &ndash sat at tables; they were two hundred people. There was no that city raytsentrovsky and rural diversity what was in the house of the bride. There were only rural people - peasantry. To me in a whisper called the people who were present at club: the carpenters, shepherds, bricklayers, mothers who gave birth to ten - twelve children, - so on reception in embassies explain in a low voice who there in a crimson beret with the ambassador Spanish speaks. The groom and the bride were put on chairs, guests sat on the boards put on empty boxes. But the groom and the bride had to sit a little, during toasts they got up, toasts were long, not toasts, but speeches. Young people stood nearby, it - in the checkered coat, a checkered cap, with red bandaging on a hand, it - in a blue coat, with a blue handbag in a hand. He gloomy looked before himself, it - having dropped the tear-stained eyes covered with long eyelashes.