LJ user af1461‘s blog has many wonderful photo entries about the Russian North, the Far East and other regions, as well as about Russian railways (see, for example, these photos of a “dead” train station in a town in Murmansk region).
The post translated below (RUS), however, isn't a typical one. It features a photo of a note pasted on the Minsk-Murmansk train – a note that's supposed to assist passengers in locating cars they've got tickets for, but is instead a great illustration of how easily something mundane may turn into the frustratingly surreal in this part of the world.
Quite a mess
Train #325/326, Minsk-Murmansk, is [mixture] of add-on cars – the Minsk-Murmansk kernel consists of only eight cars or so, while the rest are attached in [Grodno], [Brest], [Gomel], [Velikiye Luki], [Pskov] and other such places.
As a result, when the train departs from Murmansk, the numbering of cars is such that only a very sober and attentive passenger would be able to find his car:
Here's the note's translation:
train 325 numbering [of cars starts]
at the train's head
31, 32, 34, 33, from 2 to 7, [handwritten 8 inserted], 20, 21,
29, 19, 22, 17, 18, 23, 15
[handwritten at the bottom] car 0 [is] between 5 and 6
And here are two reader comments:
Big deal! This is how apartments in [St. Petersburg]'s old buildings are numbered ;) On one floor you'd have apartments 3, 17, and 24.
This is an IQ test for Murmansk residents :)
There was time when my wife was riding this train, and there's another fun thing about it: half of its cars are [registered in Belarus], while another half – in Russia, and the tickets for the former are 1.5 times cheaper. So when you were buying tickets, you had to say, “I need one for a Belarusian car” – and it came out cheaper that way.