The long-awaited May is in full swing. A polar day has been established in the Murmansk region, and the rays of the sun caress the world's largest Arctic port - the hero city of Murmansk. However, the joy of this is not enough. Winter with its meter-long snowdrifts and ice left the streets.
And now in Murmansk household rubbish and dog excrement are scattered everywhere.
Novye Izvestia invites you to stroll through the "capital of the Arctic," as this city is called here, and find out how the Murmansk people manage to live in a garbage dump, and who is to blame for this.
Murmansk - a city of snow, garbage and slogans
Every time I look out the window of a kitchen or bedroom, a disgusting sight appears before my eyes. Under the crowns of gigantic mountain ash there are piles of bottles, food bags and even old TVs. Residents of the house, like many Murmansk residents, do not like to go to the trash, although it is within walking distance. They open the windows, and ... you got it right. Cigarette bulls fly there too. When in October Murmansk begins to sweep snow, it is visually transformed. However, at the turn of April and May, meter-long snowdrifts are melting, and the metropolis resembles a ghetto. And as in Africa, some of the children here are already playing discarded rubbish under the windows, soiled from head to toe. Polar Murmansk is drowning in garbage.
“Until I got to Norway, I did not pay attention to whether it was dirty in Murmansk or not. Only on the streets of Norway did I see clean, white snow, ”the old-timer Nadezhda admits to me. “They throw trash under the windows, as far as I remember,” the girl adds. “It's alcoholics,” she says, the obvious.
The fronton of the house on Geroyev-Severomortsev Avenue, on which a huge penis is painted, is "ennobled" by solid heaps of glass containers: from cognac, vodka, various cocktails and beer. Also, the system unit, broken when falling from above, is lying around. Last year, during a fire in the house, an alcoholic was killed; firefighters and doctors managed to save his drinking buddy. Still here, as they say, the drug business is booming and there is a place for youth dens.
In spring, it is difficult to move around the courtyards of Murmansk. A mess of swampy land, snow, garbage and dog feces, multiplied by broken or missing sidewalks, make a trip to the store an exciting pastime. “Every time I go home, I wash my boots under the shower,” admitted neat Murmansk Tatyana. - To get to one of the chain stores located nearby, I make a solid detour. The beauties around are incredible - the gray Soviet architecture of Murmansk! And under the windows of one of the houses on Admiral of the Fleet Lobov Street, not only bottles are buried, but already whole bags of garbage. And neatly tied. And judging by the container lying next to it - connoisseurs of vodka, not beer, live here. An ordinary picture for Murmansk.
The largest open-air toilet in the Arctic
“People in Murmansk don't care how to live!” - indignant Alla, an energetic middle-aged woman. We accidentally got into a conversation when I was photographing the fence of school number 41, already littered with wrappers from chips and excrement. The yard of the institution, contrary to all prohibitions, is used for walks and libations. “I raised my son and grandchildren with normal people, so that they don’t even throw a candy wrapper on the ground, but I can’t neighbors! We have only one woman in the yard behind her dog with a bag walking. I’m sorry, even the playground, dogs, sorry ... whether, ”says Alla. She looks at the future of Murmansk without optimism. We communicate, trying not to step on dog feces.
Dogs. It is difficult to calculate how many domestic dogs per capita are in Murmansk. But it seems that this number is off the charts. Since the Murmansk people are little interested in hiking in nature, skiing (yes!) And sports, walking the four-legged has become a way of life in the city. Dog lovers filled everything. In winter, they wander even around Lake Semenov, interfering with skiers. “I'll break your stick!” - the pensioner threw me a tantrum when I fought off his two dogs. The promise to use a traumatic cartridge against animals cooled his ardor. However, dog feces are scattered everywhere.
“We need to do as in Norway - to sell special bags in stores and to fine heavily those who don’t clean dog poop for their pets,” says Nadezhda, who has repeatedly visited the neighboring country, which amazes her with cleanliness. "We don’t buy bags for cleaning dogs, and in Norway they are in every store," she continues. “No one does anything about excrement. We have such heaps! ” - she sums up. “In our yard, in the Pervomaisky district, there is a woman who walks for her little dog with a bag. So her other dog lovers make a laugh, ”says another Murmansk Tatyana.
For ethical reasons, Novye Izvestia does not publish a street selection of canine products. But to make it clear - in the spring some pedestrian paths are so densely mined (the snow is melting, and all layers of waste are on the ground in one day) that you have to walk along the roads of Murmansk.
How our countrymen litter in Norway
I'll start the conversation a bit from afar. “The Norwegians are in our trouble rich. Under the Union, Finnmark (the Arctic province of Norway) lived in poverty, and as our officials prevented our fishermen from unloading ships in the port, and the fleets went to Kerkines, so the “norgs” became rich, ”the taxi driver Oleg is angry. He retells the local myth of the once poor and gray Norway. The fishermen from Murman, indeed, send their prey to Kerkines. More than a century ago, before the revolution, “successful fishermen” Pomors, from the Arkhangelsk province, also went to their neighbors - for seasonal earnings at sea. And even then, Russia bought cod in Norway (and the Pomors supplied painfully low-quality goods). Today, in addition to our tourists and fishermen, Murmansk wives have appeared in Arctic Norway. Those who assimilated voice interesting things.
“At the entrance to the store in Kirkenes, I put a pot of flowers in the summer. And there Russian compatriots manage to roll hubs! Ask why I think the Russians? But because, firstly, this will never occur to the Norwegians; and secondly, Norwegians smoke tobacco rolls without filters. And in a flower pot, namely, cigarette butts with filters, ”writes the Murmansk Facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/6832136769/permalink/10157280564436770/
Lyubov Limstrand, who had already left the Russian Arctic for 23 years. “And also, I love finding scraps from seeds on shelves in the store! Here, the Norwegian youth will not be justified. Norwegians do not gnaw seeds, your mother! ” - continues the woman.
The conversation, of course, was not about abstract Russians, but about visitors from the Murmansk region. Separately taken, the Murmansk residents, as usual, wished the former compatriot “a tablecloth”. The Murmansk public is traditionally divided into two groups: some are outraged, while others recommend that those who are dissatisfied “fall” from their precious city.
Turned the city into trash - let's go to nature
It is impossible to escape from garbage in nature. Murmansk is surrounded by rocky hills, huts (pine-covered hills) and taiga tracts. There are picturesque lakes like Rogozero or Lake with a stone - and of them, despite the proximity of the metropolis, it is possible to drink water. However, the Murmansk people (and who else besides them?) Form the “urban environment” here. Broken bottles, eggplant from beer and food wrappers flaunt on every fireplace, especially where fishermen climb. Or lie chaotically along the paths. In the Kola Bay, it is unpleasant to approach the shore; so majestic Cape Serafim (residential area Roslyakovo), strewn with bottles brought by storms or abandoned by alcoholics. "But who does she interfere with?" - I was surprised at my request - not to hide the empty container among the stones in the tundra, my friend Galina. The city was within easy reach.
However, the tangible part of the Murmansk people is not particularly interested. This is the mentality of sitting, talking in the kitchen. Those who are chosen “to the nature” are most often ready to be content with the surroundings of the Murmansk-Severomorsk railway line or the margins of the “Eastern Bypass Road”. Under the buzz of transport, breathing in the aromas of the Rosta sewage river (trout used to live in it), they fry kebabs in the nearby bushes. Garbage, of course, is stored right there. Over the years. Photo attached.
It’s a paradox, but in Murmansk there is no embankment (in the seaside, I note the city), nor plain parks. Access to nature is complicated. And people, for example, in “my” Leninsky district, take walks along the railway sleepers flooded with fuel and lubricants, stepping over broken glass containers and dog feces. Under the stray flocks barking, looking at military units full of rusty trash, gloomy garage boxes and Atomflot's smoking boiler rooms. After the outbreak of Kovid-19, one-time masks were also added to the spontaneous “park”.
Looking at the garbage mess, you might think that there is no money in the city budget. It is not true!
A few days ago, the media reported a search in the apartment of Valery Peretrukhin, the former Minister of Health of the Murmansk Region, and now the head physician of the Murmansk Regional Children's Clinical Hospital.
In his apartment in shoe boxes were found: 62 million rubles, 133 thousand euros and 60 thousand dollars in cash. According to journalists, Peretrukhin "made money" on kickbacks during the construction of various kinds of medical facilities, as well as on the activities of the Pharmacy Zapolyarya company, which was specially created to participate in competitions for the supply of preferential medicines. According to media reports, Peretrukhin, suspected of fraud, signed contracts with her for as much as one and a half billion rubles.
It must be assumed that considerable sums are allocated for housing and communal services and improvement in the city. Here are just unlikely to find their tracks...