But in most traditional dacha communities, where there aren't even permanent mailing addresses, the old ways persist. Parties with singing and dancing, horse riding and swimming, and gardening occupy most residents' time. While mostly recreational, the extended stays in these summer homes demand some self-sufficiency. In fact, in tougher Soviet times almost 90% of Russia's vegetables came from dacha gardens.
The recent revival of the dacha in Russia seems to resonate to America's re-discovery of summer camp and cottage culture as well. As more and more people move into cities, the countryside is becoming a critical part of our escape.