The mausoleum is situated in the Red Square, opposite the big, expensive GUM store. The father of communism in the same area with a symbol of capitalism ! Ironical. Across the mausoleum, people at GUM (General Universal Magazine) are drinking coffee, licking ice-cream and... looking at the tomb of Lenin. A somewhat weird scene.
Before entering the mausoleum, you have to stand in a long queue; when you're in, you start descending narrow, black stairs you can hardly see because of the darkness around. No handrail available. If it weren't for a japanese tourist couple who held me by my arms, perhaps I wouldn't have made it to the ground area.
Finally, a spot of light - it's Lenin. He looks quite well, like he is just asleep, with one fist clenched , the other open. The maintenance of his body is a combination of great art and science. Kudos to the russians for their skill and perseverence!
You are not allowed to take pictures or to stop; you have to keep moving around the glass structure he's laid in, and then climb up and... out ( to the Kremlin wall necropolis where you pass by the graves of other prominent russian figures: Stalin, Brezhnev, Andropov, Gagarin...).
I felt an urge to raise my hand in a salute both outside the mausoleum and inside ,while watching his embalmed body. Great Man, a real statesman, one that had shaped russian and world history.
There have been debates on the possibility of his burrial, after 90 years of display. My personal opinion is that they won't do it, they can't do it. It has become a major "attraction" to the world. Each year, millions of people come to see him. The Red Square will not be the same without him. A visit to Moscow is meaningless without a visit to the mausoleum. I suppose, he will eventually be buried when his body will no longer properly respond to the preserving procedures.