ULYANOVSK: Marina is the director at the Lenin family museum, and if the communist leader were alive today, he would probably use her life story as an example of the deficiencies of the current Russian state.
A teacher for twenty years before becoming director of the museum 10 years ago, Marina lives at home with her 26 year-old son and several cats and dogs. Her son is unemployed and 1/3 of her very small salary goes to housing and communal services, she said, probably living her with next to nothing after food expenses.
ULYANOVSK: Emilia, a psychology student, was leaving her university that lies directly across a square from the Lenin Museum. She was dressed in all black, except for her light-colored sunglasses.
Emilia said she got into hard rock and gothic music such as Marilyn Manson at the age of 15, something that has influenced her fashion style.
Raised by her grandparents, Emilia said she has about 6 tattoos on her body. She also has two small ones – a heart and bow – on her neck, which she says are meant to symbolize a friendship of 12 years. Her friend has the same two tattoos.
Moscow Portrait: One popular Russian film goes by the title "Irony of Fate," something that could be applied to Sasha's life. Born in Perm in the Urals, he said he served nine years in part for anti-communist actions. Now he makes a living portraying the man who personifies of Russian communism: Lenin.