Smothered in a thick, pristine layer of snow, the quiet village of Privolnoye feels very far from the heart of power.
But this remote spot was once home to Mikhail Gorbachev, the last leader of the Soviet Union. Twenty-five years after the end of that empire, his legacy remains hotly disputed.
“The place is covered in shame for producing that man,” our taxi driver growled when we told him where we were heading. Like many Russians, Andrei holds Mr Gorbachev responsible for the collapse of the USSR.
But in Privolnoye itself people still have warm words for the man widely admired in the West for ending the Cold War without bloodshed.
Read more at the BBC.