The remnants of the Soviet era are still around, but becoming thinner on the ground all the time, certainly in city centres. But you don't have to go far before they peak out of yards or roads in villages. The ravages of winter accelerate rust and decay, and they were never built to last in the first place. No doubt some will be preserved, like the Trabants that proudly scutter around eastern Germany. Part of me is sad to see part of the old Russia that I knew disappearing. This was my Russia. The less selfish part of me thinks - good riddance.