|Harriet Rachevsky in her youth|
Vladimir Rachevsky was the brother-in-law to the Grand Duke Boris Vladimirovich Romanov, his sister Zenaida Rachevskaya having been initially a mistress of but later married to Boris (pic). A direct descendant of Czar Alexander II of Russia and a first cousin once removed to Czar Nicholas II, Boris had fled the Bolshevik Revolution to the Caucasus in today's Georgia with his life and his mistress in tow. It appears that Princess Harriet Rachevsky's husband Vladimir was not a direct blood relation of the Romanovs but, as it happened so often then, titles were freely exchanged in foreign soil to impress and by the time Harriet met her husband everyone was convinced he was a titled prince.
|Grand Duke Boris and his wife|
|Zina and Rhea|
That was until 1973 when we got the sad news that Zina had passed away suddenly. We heard that she had frozen herself to death while she was meditating in the Himalayas. Checking a few blogs on her life written by her contemporaries, peritonitis is cited as the cause of her death. Whatever might have been the case, there was no longer any reason for Harriet to continue living in Nepal. She soon decided to pack her bags and leave with her grand-daughter. I often wonder what became of Rhea. The last I heard of Harriet was when my father, while serving as Nepalese ambassador in Britain, told me that she had written to him from America, that was back in 1976 or so.
|Zina the monk in 1970|