Monday, November 2, 2009
Remember the last TMI Tuesday I suggested that I might give you an embalming post? Well hehehe...Are you ready?
In 1924 when Vladimir Lenin died, he didn't want any fancy burials or monuments erected in his honor. But Stalin decided that since religion was being supressed, they needed some sort of 'Shrine' to the Soviet Union. So Dead Lenin was just that attraction!
Preserving the dead body was the first task at hand, and since refrigeration was not that advanced in The Soviet Union, and the body was already starting to deteriorate, Plan B was put into effect...Chemically embalming him!
First thing...Remove all the internal organs. His 'twigs and berries' were left in place though.
Second thing...Address the issue of drying. His body was already starting to turn ashy and shriveling, so they immersed him in a solution of glycerine and other preservative chemicals that infused his body and gave him a plump moist look.
The only problem with this was keeping the body from turning yellow and drying out.
It required regular upkeep! In spite of having a glass covered coffin built for him, every two weeks or so his hands and face are soaked in a glycerine solution to keep from shriveling. Every so often Lenin sprouts little patches of fungus, and he has to be dabbed with Hydrogen Peroxide.
Once a year the tomb is closed and his body is removed to the back room for a once over to spot overall fungus. He gets a dip in the Glycerine solution to keep him looking his best, and he is given a fresh new suit for his adoring public...
Under his new suit, plastic bandages are wrapped around his body to keep any juicy fluids from leaking out.
The tomb remains open daily from 9am to 1pm, and visitors still shuffle by his body.
The lighting is very soft and warm which makes his discolored hair and yellow skin less noticable. Lenin is said to look like he is peacefully sleeping...Others say he looks like he escaped from Madame Tussauds!