Sian Thomas reads from Elena Gorokhova's memoir of growing up behind the Iron Curtain.
Elena Gorokhova wishes her mother had come from Leningrad, the world of Pushkin and the tsars, lace ironwork and pearly domes.
Its sophistication might have left a permanent mark of refinement on her soul.
But she didn't.
She came from the provincial town of Ivanovo in central Russia, where chickens lived in the kitchen and a pig squatted under the stairs.
She came from where they lick plates.
Read by Sian Thomas
A Jane Marshall Production for BBC Radio 4.