« One fine April evening, I decided to consult the Marcel Proust questionnaire (as it was known in the English parlours of the XIX century). The version I used differed somewhat from both the classic questionnaire and from the questions my friends (and indeed I myself) had posed before.»
Which three quotes best sum up your life?
— «If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need» (Marcus Tullius Cicero) «The wind cannot be tamed» (Erich Maria Remarque) « In all music is Bach, and is in each of us is God» (Joseph Alexandrovich Brodsky)
2. In which city would you like to die?
— Saint Petersburg.
3. Do you fear loneliness?
— I fear being left without it.
4. With which adversary have you been struggling all your life?
— Time. And it always seems to be winning.
5. Which is your favourite garden?
— St Petersburg's Taurian Garden, in May.
6. Which is your favourite park?
— St Petersburg's Pavlovsk Park, in March and September.
7. Which is your favourite colour spectrum?
— For a long time, it was the centre piece of the Bosch triptych. Now, it is Morocco in February, red ochre, silver, emerald, and a fusion of creams – witnessing them is a dazzling experience.
8. What is your deepest disappointment?
— That the Aeaea Islands do not exist.
9. What is your favourite musical composition?
— Bach's Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D-major, Rakhmaninov's Concerto No. 2, Shubert's Evening Serenade, John Williams's score for Schindler's List.
10. Which are your favourite artists?
— Leonardo da Vinci, Jan van Eyck, Jeronim Bosch van Aeken, Arkhip Kuindzhi.
11. Which are your favourite poets?
— Joseph Brodsky, Marina Tsvetaeva, Kira Levina, Vera Polozkova.
12. Which character traits interfere in your life?
— Mainly indecisiveness. Also, imagination.
13. What is your main weakness?
— Previously I would have said despondency and pride. Now, mainly the latter.
14. Which famous women's lives inspire you and offer answers to your inner questions?