Thursday, June 03, 2010

Off to Chernobyl

I apologize for my utter lack of blog posts lately. I've been extremely busy with my dissertation research--I'm really starting to feel the pressure to get my research done here in the limited time I have left. I've been working in the archives every weekday from opening until closing, and then in the libraries on Saturday. But in part that's because I knew that I was going to lose the next week and a half to an excursion I had planned from before I got to Moscow. That is, I'm leaving for Kiev tomorrow and next week I'm going to spend a few days at Chernobyl.

Now, in a sense this is still "research" since one of the chapters of my dissertation is about the role Soviet civil defense played at Chernobyl, but it's also the fulfillment of a longstanding desire to see the place for myself and cut through the myths. Will it be an unparalleled ecological disaster zone? A latter-day Eden enabled by the lack of human inhabitation? The world's biggest time capsule? A toybox of wonderful Soviet things? Only one way to find out...

This trip has been organized by a friend who's a fellow Oak Ridger--indeed, we've got something of a pilgrimage of us Oak Ridgers headed off for Chernobyl like some sort of nuclear Canterbury. I'll be back sometime around the 15th to let you know how it went.

5 comments:

Christian said...

Good luck and have fun!

(And are there more Oak Ridgers from our high school era over there that I don't know about?)

DV8 2XL said...

Lucky stiff. I've always wanted to go there myself.

Rod Adams said...

I, too, would love to visit and see some of the sights that Mary Mycio described in her excellent book titled "Wormwood Forest".

Please take lots of photos and have a few chats with the people who never left the area. My suspicion is that they are just as healthy as Mary found them to be.

Scott said...

Always wanted to go to Chernobyl. Thought it'd be a great place to be a hermit and get away from the world for awhile.

Russian Sphinx said...

Good luck with dissertation research!