Now, when a high-speed metro RER has brought to him one of his lines to the center of Paris – Chatelet is now seventeen minutes to Champs Elysees and twenty. Suburb of Montgeron, a quiet suburb with a French one-story, suburban-type houses, gardens and provincial comfort, suddenly became part of the Parisian metropolis. However, no changes have not touched Le Moulin de Senlis. Estimated according to the strict professional historic architecture, it is not locking at all. The dimensions of the structure does not correspond to the standard. Too small, although there are signs – a tower, coat of arms on the gate and the main building, a fortress battlement with loopholes openings. In the catalog of sites in France it is called "a meeting place for King Henry IV". In general, Le Moulin de Senlis means "Senlis Mill" – the name of the neighboring towns and vast forest reserve, located a hundred kilometers from Paris.
The castle had its cellars and stables, now rebuilt in residential areas. It was not only a place for banquets and receptions, but the whole independent sector. The king, himself a provincial, who grew up in a similar castle in one of the provinces of France, made it seem, in memory of his childhood, and often came here, just do not know – at the Huguenot gathering or meeting with another beauty. Or maybe he was hiding here from the court to stay a little peace and quiet.
The place is indeed a wonderful peace. Only occasionally will fly past the rustle of a steel trans-European express train to Rome. Dense forest surrounding the castle was once, almost all cut down. On three sides of the building was surrounded by sprawling estate of the suburbs, but on a couple of acres of the park remained untouched nature, so nezatoptannaya and clean as possible in our time. On the back of the castle for abandoned brick wall someone's estate, the meadow is grazed by goats and horses. Park perecekaetsya river, or rather, a large stream Yer. This, incidentally, a tributary of the Seine. In the creek water lilies float, bent willow on a fallen log in the water turtles bask in the sun, but sometimes audible splash. This otter catch small fish.
At this point, the Impressionists painted. Remember the water lilies in a pond in a painting by Monet? These are the same, the Monzheronovskogo castle.
Nine centuries ago, everything was covered in uninhabited forests, and this place was great lively Abbey. Centuries passed, came around the civilized city, built on the site of the abbey door. What's the secret lies in it? Here, in the eleventh century lived Queen of France, Anne Yaroslavna. Yaroslav the Wise, cementing and improving the Russian state, has decided to strengthen its influence in the West, and this gave all his daughters to foreign princes. Anna gave the heir to the French crown. Anna was traveling with his entourage to a narrowing across Europe, in those days was not fashionable, and full of troubles and dangers. Marriage was generally successful, but happiness is marred by the untimely death of the young king. Mourned, Anna married a second time, now failed. This time the husband got healthy, but too inclined to the female gender, and peers. Tired of scandals and betrayals, Anna, first retired to the abbey, and then, after living here for several years, returned to Russia.
If you can talk about geopathic places, Le Moulin de Senlis, of course, is that way. Instead of the abbey, dilapidated by time, was built in the fifteenth century, Le Moulin de Senlis. There are legends that in the past century the castle belonged to the Order of the Rosicrucians. In the proof is shown on the front of the main building of the unusual coat with a rose and a cross. They say the Rosicrucians sanctified this place, and took an oath of him. Maybe that's why the castle was never destroyed by the invaders. What about just not happening – wars, revolutions. And on the walls of the castle there are no marks other than the natural signs of age. The neighboring town of Ville-Saint-Georges, a major railway junction, almost completely destroyed during the last world war. And Le Moulin de Senlis Nazis did not touch.
After the Russian October Revolution, when thousands of Russian rushed to Paris to escape the Red Terror, a Russian countess bought the estate and established here foyer – a haven for Russian refugees. Here lived thrown out of their country's historical hurricane dukes, earls, lieutenants. They drank, shoot, suffered from homesickness. Someone drunk and died in Paris, cesspool, someone has managed to adapt and moved to the prestigious areas. This period of the representatives of the Russian emigration, or rather, the children emigres do not like to remember, so it's hard to find any reliable historical data and names of that time. Even the name of the Countess-known benefactress. In the all-knowing guide details the historical sights only on the events of 15-19 centuries, and then inserted from the beginning of this century, the castle belongs to the Russian community. After the Second World War, the Tolstoy Foundation, organized in the castle a haven for street children and children whose parents were killed at the front. It was the French "Republic SHKID." Guidance sought shelter be tough to turn the street children and orphans in respectable citizens of France, and say that the shelter was dominated by draconian laws. Now the yard is full of kids, but kids today are gay persons. And from that time will remain a monument to the unknown author. Above the quadrangular stone fountain, served in the old drinkers for the royal horses, someone erected a figure of the little prince. Sadly, he looks at today's inhabitants. The generation of emigres, who grew up in normal families, today – a respectable French with Russian roots, recalls that as children they scare Montgeron. "If you're going to misbehave, give you at Le Moulin de Senlis". But not for long Le Moulin de Senlis remained orphanage.
Strange environmental changes began to occur in the vicinity. Whether the post-war building, or any other reasons have led to changes, but the rains and floods have flooded the castle, and the tenants were evicted. A few years Moulin Senlis stood unoccupied. In the spring he was completely surrounded by water, which gave him a fantastic mystery. The local mayor, alien sentiment, he gave orders to clean the park and change the channel of the creek. In the sixties, the castle was restored. Countess-owner by the time she died, bequeathing to the Russian community. And then broke out in Russia's "thaw" and the ensuing political freeze. In Paris, pulled Russia's new refugees – the dissidents of the sixties and seventies. They settled in Le Moulin de Senlis. After the war, there appeared a new unusual structure. Serb refugee community has asked for permission to build the Paris Prefecture of his church. They refused, and then they turned to the Russian community. Emigres Committee decided that the Slavs have to stick together, and here in the backyard of a small church grew. In the likeness of the Armenian religious buildings – Russian icons, which lies an iridescent glow of Catholic stained glass.
Now Le Moulin de Senlis Russian hostel. The exterior walls are covered with beautiful greenery. Chimera menacingly leaned over the gate with forged heavy constipation. Above the entrance to an ancient coat of arms. Bars on the windows of a watchtower. The main building has stained glass windows. The fortress wall still surrounds the building. Curious French tourists, attracted by the unusual architecture, sometimes entering – what it is, not a museum there? No, not a museum, a hostel named after the monk Berthold Schwarz. Russia at the Paris branch of the backyard. From the windows of the smell of borscht and the cutlet. Could be heard shouting: "Vova, a lively home, who said!" In the courtyard of the men in training pants poking in machines, using the familiar expression to the pain. Pulls on the ropes underwear. Wander lazily striped Murzik. On the bench resting grandmother, picking bones neighbors. Tenants a little, about fifty, but they managed to completely change the spirit of the lock and turn it into an ordinary Rookery …
Despite the ancient glory of this place, to live here for a Russian immigrant is not so prestigious. First, the distance from the inconveniences. At parties of Russians in the midst of fun people out of the hostel Monzheronovskogo apologizes and leaves the company. You need time to get home. In the morning – the morning of. High Speed Underground held here not so long ago, and although at peak times trains run every five to ten minutes – they are clogged with the French, hurrying to work. Tightness in the Moscow subway, with the only difference being that all polite. Frequent strikes of transport workers is completely cut off from the center of the castle. Walking there will not walk. Prior to the Champs Elysees – seventeen miles. Even on a bike, not every get. Many have their own car, but then again, during the strikes of the road crammed to overflowing. Hours of traffic jams not easier queues Brezhnev period. Anyone who finds a stable job in Paris, trying to move into the city.
The second reason, forced to leave the castle, – distress and inconvenience. When people say that the last major overhaul was carried out during the Paris Commune, it does not seem an exaggeration. All the time something goes down. In the winter, usually intermittently disconnected heating, thick walls immediately frozen, because of all the doors can be heard coughing. In addition, the electricity begins to fade, because all together include electric heaters. Fuses knocks the evening, and someone should make a personal feat in the interests of others – turn off your heater, because the line is busy. No one wants to freeze in the name of the team, so that the castle is steeped in darkness for several hours, until someone spits with anger, and, covered with warm, goes to bed. In fact, the castle – a large communal, and scandalous, and friendly. In the hallway by a garland of lingerie – bicycles, showers are almost always busy, and the burners are lit an eternal flame. At each of the three buildings – one for the kitchen bullfighting. There is also a social soul in one of the basements, which is tacitly referred to as "torture." And the people coming here, though not spoiled luxury, from the Soviet districts, but not acquainted with this communal life.
Public commandant of the castle, qualified interpreter, intelligent, far from the desire to become a little potentates of the estate, trying never to interfere in the dispute, and says: "Know your own." However, happen that: an illness or an unexpected visit relatives – run to the same neighbor, his countryman, yesterday, spat upon.
Old-timers say that earlier in the main living ghost, a lady in white. No one knew who was represented by the lady – Anna Yaroslavna, mistress of Henry IV, or Russian refugee. By the harmless white cloud, looming at the end of the corridor after midnight, and are used to not be afraid. Suddenly, the ghost was gone. Maybe departed to another world, or maybe moved closer to the center.
If you want to, not being a ghost, stay in a castle, you must obtain permission of Mr. Struve, director of the official residences Monzheronovskogo. Nikita Alekseevich in the castle is rare, he lives in a completely different side, with his family. His duty to command the dormitory he openly dislikes. It's not that the current tenants of the latest wave of "scoop" of emigration, by definition alien to him. Just lock does not bring him nothing but trouble. A nobleman, a true intellectual and a descendant of the famous stories in the Russian political leader, Struve, with far greater zeal engaged in other activities – publishing and distribution of books in Russian. Struve works as director of the Paris branch of the international publishing YMSA-press, which publishes books Russian emigre writers. He has a big store on the street of St. Genevieve, in the heart of the Latin Quarter. In addition to publishing the hassle and bustle of the shop, he takes visitors to France, writers and cultural figures. To all, Nikita Alekseevich he writes books and lectures on the Russian language faculty of the University of Nanterre, a noble northern suburbs of Paris. All this is written in "inostrantse" Moscow philologist Max Krongauz.
When the bell rings out of the castle, on the face of Struve appears cinchona expression. No good news phone call from Montgeron promises. Nobody asks him to read the manuscript or asks for advice about writing a dissertation on Russian linguistics. Most of all news relating to water supply failure or clogging the toilet.
If Nikita Alekseevich was not a literary publicist, an esthete, a writer of genre or type Zoshchenko Babel, he would be thankful for what she granted him the castle. Dialogues of the stories were Zoshchenko childish prattle in comparison with what is heard in the corridors zamkovskih.
Makbetovskie passion never flared up in these walls, the biggest crime is theft from the public the refrigerator. There were fights, but never came to the injury. Local police are well aware of the road to the castle, and often the neighbors called her, not dividing plates, but azhany never really in a hurry, knowing from experience that the greatest damage is battered and scratched cymbals. Most often, the police drove up to the castle to take another stolen car, abandoned at the gates. Local bullies are doing so to put the police on the Russian immigrants. But the commissioners deem too simple-minded to the Russian thrown clues to his own house and are looking for culprits beyond. Check the lock instead of the Roma settlement, located near Le Moulin de Senlis.
In late December, when Paris bedecked Christmas tinsel, and supermarkets are holiday sales, the castle falls into unrestrained festivities. Residents celebrate Noel Olympic truce, and many days of feasts. Gradually, Noel goes into the New Year, and there, and Russian Christmas …
When Russian tourists come to Paris, they were visited by all means at the cemetery of Saint Genevieve du Bois. Do not understand this passion for paternal graves. Take the train RER line A towards Melun and go to Montgeron. I can not promise that the inhabitants of the castle will welcome you kindly. I can not guarantee the well and the fact that your eyes will be delighting exquisite spectacle. But it is a fact of life. So living Russian poets and artists in exile, forced or voluntary. Thus, among all this lived Marina Tsvetaeva, who washed the floors in the nearby suburbs. Thus interrupted Ilya Ehrenburg. And Marc Chagall. You will see pictures of everyday life Russian cultural figures. We love and appreciate them while they are alive.