R.J. Wootton

This was the year when I was in the USSR on an exchange fellowship between the Academy of Sciences and the Royal Society. From March to July I was working at PIN, except for two weeks with Yuri in what was then Leningrad (waiting for permission to examine one palaeontinid holotype in the Geological Museum, and greatly enjoying the experience). The PIN staff were very welcoming, though Elena Ernestovna Bekker-Migdisova and Alexander Grigorievich Sharov both tended to lecture me about the wickedness of the West. Yuri, Alik, Sasha, Iren and Lyusi were all about my age, and we had much to talk about, as you can imagine, preferably where nobody else could hear.
2. Yuri and I had many frank political and social discussions in a rowing boat in the middle of the Neva!
3. The picture of Yuri in front of a crowd was taken next to the Winter Palace, waiting for a procession including Khruschev, Castro, Yuri Gagarin and Herman Titov – during Castro's first visit. Yuri and I had travelled to Leningrad by train, by chance with an Intourist tour of Americans, Canadians and others. The smart young woman behind Yuri was a buyer at a New York store. Next to her was the tour guide, Galia, who was anxiously waiting to show us round the Winter Palace.
In July, Pamela, my wife, came out to join us, and we went on expedition to Karatau and Madygen, led by AG Sharov, with Yuri, Iren, two technicians (Rita and Natasha), and Kolya, the driver. I believe Pamela and I were the first westerners to be allowed on an Academy of Sciences expedition, at least since the war, and it was a wonderful experience. There were tensions: Alexander Grigorievich was suspicious that we were taking anti-Soviet propaganda photographs to put in the Western press, and there were some difficult arguments, in which the others always took our side. On the way from Karatau to Madygen we visited Samarkand – as tourists.
It was all a great experience, at a very interesting time. The USSR had only recently begun to acknowledge that there was good science happening outside the Soviet block, and all the young scientists were learning English.
4. Yuri and Pamela by the river Arys, on the way to Karatau, where we stopped to wash the expedition lorry
5. Yuri and myself in the river Boraldai, at Aktas.
6. The camp above Aktas, at breakfast time with Iren and Pamela by the fire, and Sharov by his tent.
7 and 8 are where the Boraldai runs through a gorge: 7 shows Pamela and Yuri in the water; 8 shows Yuri, Iren, Pamela and Rita on a cliff.
9. Yuri and Kazakh family with their horses at a spring where we all got our water.
10. Visiting the Kazakhs in their Yurt. Yuri toward the left. Kolya in the blue vest, Sharov to the right, and Pamela in front with the baby.
11. Pamela, Kolya and myself with the Kazakhs
12. Two Kazakh girls at our table, with Kolya, Sharov and Pamela.
13. Sharov, Yuri, Rita and Iren in Samarkand, at the entrance to the Shah Zindeh group of mausoleums. The small stray dog was adopted by the expedition, and eventually travelled back to Moscow with Kolya and the lorry.
14 – 15 we briefly visited the Shurab site: 14 Yuri, Iren, Sharov, Pamela and Kolya; 15 Pamela, Iren and Yuri.
16. On the way from Karatau to Madygen we stopped at a Kolhoz and were entertained to breakfast by the workers. One, we learned, had been in Cuba, assembling missiles…
17. Madygen – the collecting site. Pamela under the cover, Rita in the open.
18. Eating in the camp at Madygen.

International Congress of Entomology Moscow 1968
This memorable congress took place at a tense time during the brief 'Prague Spring', just before the Soviet troops invaded Czechoslovakia. Jarmila Kukalova's lively presence at these two parties, at Olga Mikhailovna Martynova's and Yuri's parents apartments, is poignant: two weeks later she was escaping Prague on the last plane out, leaving behind her two daughters in the care of her mother. The slides are bad, but interesting – a particularly nice photograph of Olga Mikhailovna, who was a very sweet lady – very kind to me, and with a great sense of humour. One of the young women is Sasha Ponomarenko's wife, Nadezhda. Interesting are the photographs of John Evans and his wife Faith, who was the youngest daughter of R.J Tillyard.