A trip to Tula, 200km south of Moscow, provides a chance to mix a little history and travelogue with some thoughts about what the city reveals about the nature of provincial life, regional politics and the state economy versus the market economy. In the second half, I look at Tula's governor Alexei Dyumin, a former bodyguard to Putin and for some still a potential successor. How much do governors matter?
The travel blog I mention is Travels in Deepest Muscovy, which will later feature a photo-essay or two in Tula.
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