In The City Of Vikramaditya

Arrived today in a bitterly cold Severodvinsk, snowblown and windy. Escorted into the closed city from Archangelsk by representatives of Sevmash and three personnel from the ship I'm here to report on: the Vikramaditya.

They love her. They have deep respect for what she's been through, but they're ready to open her up on the sail home starting next month. Most crew stay on board the Vikramaditya now, berthed in the enormous dockyard of Sevmash, from where she'll up hook, perhaps post Navy Day on December 4 to begin her journey home.

"You'll know when you see her how proud we are of her," a Lt Cdr from the crew told me today. "She will make the country proud. All the troubles we had with her are in the past."

Will be spending the day at Sevmash tomorrow, where I'll also be meeting and spending time with the aircraft carrier's CO, senior Sevmash officials and Indian Navy reps who've flown in from India for the commissioning ceremony.

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