I rather like this bit.
"A man could run as long as there was land under his feet, solid ground on which his falling-apart boots could thud, where he collapsed in exhaustion, before getting up and running again. He could ride in the crowded trains, in unbearable stench, being eaten alive by lice. The problem arose when he found himself at the shore of a sea, with nothing but waves from here to the horizon. When there was no more land, there was nothing left but to fall from the abrupt precipice of its edge.
It was his punishment, Obolenskiy supposed, for having lived wrong; he had never felt the country underneath him, and now he had none. No university, Sechenov or Wittgenstein were going to change that.
He had lost his rifle a long while ago, somewhere between his battalion and his epaulettes. The latter seemed superfluous, and he tore them off, like scabs off an old wound. Not to avoid recognition – that was impossible; who couldn't tell a White army officer a mile away? – but to expose his hurt, his failure to belong. He tossed the limp cloth wings on the beach, and sat down, hugging his knees to his chest, flicking one pebble after another into the deep water of the Black Sea."