For the next season of Czechs still bought a farm in the village of Melikhovo, Moscow province. And began to build.

He was digging in the garden, planted trees. The architect Fyodor Schechtel in June 1892 reported in the letter that “ordered 50 cherry trees and 100 bushes of lilac”. And then did write that at first it “broke” from physical labor, but then – accustomed.

Fire barn, which was built by Anton Chekhov. / Artem Lokalov

In Chekhov’s estate, closed on quarantine, and now engaged in farming. Here, raised beds, and stable, and aviary. So at this uncrowded time in Melikhovo still have someone to attract the traveler. The correspondent of “homeland” was greeted, appearing from behind the fence, the dog, however, without ladies. Then pulled from the pond, geese and ducks. Tame and talkative.

Local residents and geese. / Artem Lokalova Pond dug on the orders of Chekhov, to drain the marshy ground. Beside him, Chekov had built a fire barn. They say the building needs a restoration. And the drainage system laid down by Chekhov, act now. The village has several ponds and ditches, spanned with bridges.

Christmas Church. / Artem Lokalov

On the footbridge to get to the two churches standing opposite each other. Christmas for the arrival of Anton Pavlovich fell into disrepair and at the request of Chekhov peasants, hired workers, who straightened the frame and built a new bell tower. And the dome was crowned with a polished “mirror crosses”, which “glistened in the sun and under the moon, like a lighthouse by the sea” and were visible from a distance “for the whole thirteen miles”.

In 1994, the temple was not saved from the fire, and in five years built a new, also wooden. Near the temple village cemetery, where is buried Yuri Avdeev, founded in Melikhovo Chekhov’s Museum-reserve. By 1951, when he walked all the way here from the manor was almost nothing left. The painting was almost on Chekhov, who complained: “the bad Road, and the horses I have worse.”

But now on an asphalt street near the temples, strolling mothers with baby carriages and carried by boys on bicycles. People say that many came to Melikhovo from Moscow – here-isolation is easier than in the city.

In Melikhovo quarantine is not the same as in Moscow. / Artem Lokalov

Physicians who talked about the importance of hygiene in the late nineteenth century, the village people also feared, shunned. And in some places could inflict violence, not wanting to sit in the cholera barracks.

So in Melikhovo is not needed, although, as Chekhov wrote in July of 1892, “cholera is creeping higher and higher, but slowly and hesitantly”.

In may 2020 in Melikhovo crawl in different directions snakes. Hope – garden worker in the Museum-reserve – says that a lot of them. But this is not a problem in comparison to what threatens the extension of the quarantine.

In hostdime Museum employs people from the neighbouring villages. From Bershova of Vaskina, and we are local. The last two months, despite the fact that we are all transferred to the isolation, salary received, as expected. But what happens next? With the increases we have someone 15 thousand a month left, who is 17. And the rate of eight thousand. Here I think, how to live, if increases will not be…

village shop at the main entrance to the Chekhov estate. / Artem Lokalov

the Only Melikhovskaya shop near the main entrance to the estate – is open until two in the afternoon. Then two cafes. Closed until better times.

For Hope with her husband and daughters the fun out of the online store five miles from home. Or stroll through the village. Little Anastasia gives me candy and tirelessly mutters. Anton would have said – Dragonfly.

I Think it is only in the letters is configured pessimistic. Actually, only in the summer of 1892 he visited about a thousand patients from 25 villages. And the money for the treatment of the peasants did not take.

a Dog's life because of the quarantine has not changed. / Artem Lokalov

Now the doctor’s in Melikhov no. First-aid station next’kin. But if something serious should go to the Czechs. Yes, once took doctor Chekhov, and now doctors in the city that bears his name. This former station of Lopasnya, familiar to Anton Pavlovich.

Anton’s as if the times wrote. Clinic, where he was taken in the Museum. The school, built at the expense of Chekhov, too, only a memorial. But it is now closed as all existing. Schoolchildren in the village a little. Sach��since they quarantined the house, and before that went to study in VAS, and someone in the city.

school Building, built with funds Chekhov. / Artem Lokalov

From city to Melikhovo visitors will go when you remove ograniczenia. Especially in summer, the estate often hosts performances. For example, “the Seagull,” which Chekhov wrote here – when cholera has receded. And more – “Uncle Vanya”, “a Man in a case”, “House”… So Anton Pavlovich managed to improve the financial situation, but not health.

It was getting worse, so they decided to sell Melikhovo and move to the Crimea. But these places will forever remain with Chekhov. Now, as he wrote: “Ravines and cliffs there, around the quiet, smooth surface so the grace of God. Here’s my address: the station of Lopasnya, Moscow-Kursk road, village Melihovo”.

P. S. Come here, when the mode of self-isolation. In the meantime, the estate-Museum is closed on quarantine, then you can walk online.