Travel to Ivanovo Region, Central Russia (Story 16)

After we came out of the mystic "fog bubble " in Kostroma region and entered the Ivanovo region, the strange feeling of being transferred into a different paradigm did not leave me, especially when Igor said that the dirt road we were driving on was supposed to be a blacktop highway as marked on the modern topographic map.

Undeveloped Highway

We did not know what to expect next, either a 19th century stagecoach passing by or the band of Genghis-Khan warriors shooting arrows at us. Only the presence of electric power lines kept us sane on this "federal highway."

Horrible Roads in Ivanovo Region

The region of Ivanovo (Ivanovskaya Oblast) occupies the northern part of land between the Rivers Volga and Oka. Half of its territory is covered with forests, of which 90% are pines, firs and birches. There are 160 rivers and 150 lakes in the region.

The leading industrial sectors in Ivanovo Region are the textile, engineering and chemical industries. It is the country's third-largest manufacturer of woolen and linen fabrics and seventh-largest manufacturer of silk fabrics.

The Ivanovo coat of arms depicts a shield which is cut into two parts, red and blue, with three narrow wavy silver belts in the bottom. There is a gold shuttle with a silver core in a right heraldic field. A silver torch is in a left part. A shield is crowned by an iron crown. A gold lion on the right and a gold eagle at the left are the shield-holders. A pedestal is a wreath of green stalks and leaves with dark blue flowers of flax and cotton, interweaved by red-blue band with a silver strip.

Coat of Arms and Flag of Ivanovo Region

Coat of Arms and Flag of Ivanovskaya Oblast

The capital of the region, the city of Ivanovo, is called the "city of brides" due to the overwhelming number of single unmarried women, female workers employed by the textile factories. Because the ratio Women-to-Men is 100 to 85 in the city, it is hard for young ladies to find a decent man for marriage. The competition in dating is so high that they have to be very creative in expressing their beauty.

Young Brides of Ivanovo

Brides of Ivanovo

...Oops! Wrong picture!.. Here we go!

Real Ivanovo Brides

Ivanovo Brides


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source: Geographical, Historical and Socioeconomic Atlas of Russia, Moscow, 1989