As I approached the Palace I became sensible of an eerie change, both in it and in its immediate surroundings. I stopped to consider in what the change consisted. Then knowledge dawned upon me. Tsarkoe was a dead place. Its windows were almost hidden by the straggling branches of the undipped trees, grass grew between the stones of its silent courtyard, and I instantly likened it to a famous Russian picture, “Le Chateau Oublie.” It was indeed a forgotten castle!
I walked to and fro gazing up at the windows, but those within the Palace gave no sign of life. I wanted to call aloud that I was there, but I dared not imperil their safety or my own. I considered even now that I held my life in trust for the service of the Empress… Who knew when she might require me?
As usual, I went to church. The time has been changed—all the clocks have been shifted one hour forward. I slept badly last night thanks to those vile mosquitoes—one more bit of sheer torture on top of all my other miseries and misfortunes.
We still have no genuine parties with realistic political programmes. The slogans used by the parties are entirely artificial, and it is not clear to whom they are addressed; they are not taken seriously by those who proclaim them. See more
For instance, what real meaning does the slogan “All land for the Working People” have at municipal elections, where everything is connected to the practical provision of urban amenities?
The city Duma is not intended to decide the question of land for the peasants, and it has no right to legislative power. And the great mass of people – city-dwellers in domestic service, for the most part - that has been seduced by the slogan “land and freedom”, has been misled.
Nothing new in our captivity. The only distraction is going out. It is very hot, and for some days Alexis Nikolaevitch has been bathing in the pond round the children's island. It is a great joy to him.
Those coming from the front talk about the arrogance of the soldiers, it is unthinkable.
Every citizen of the Russian state is guaranteed freedom of conscience. Correspondingly, a citizen’s enjoyment of civil and political rights does not depend on his religious confession, and no one can be persecuted or restricted in any of his rights due to his persuasion in matters of faith.
Upon arriving in Petrograd on urgent business for a few days, I realized that the most serious and decisive events of our time are moving ever closer. In the two months of my ceaseless travels around the front, the political atmosphere in Petrograd has changed drastically.