Friday, August 18, 2006

Actually, it's not like Communism

So this post is way overdue. I have been back from Russia for like years now. But the fact that I haven't been sleeping well is my only excuse. I would like to thank the otherwise annoying A.Z. for providing me with the title to this post. I was surprised how un-Communist Russia was, except for the line of old women who stood outside the grocery store near my hotel in St. Petersburg, begging for people to buy their gnarly flowers or turnips or something. That was early into my Russian stay, however, before I fell in love with the babushka, which is more than just the shawl old ladies wear over their heads, Americans! The babushka actually is the old lady. And she is awesome.

So the Pot made fun of my lists while I was gone? Here's a list...

Top Things I Learned in Russia
1. Don't go by yourself.
2. Don't go by yourself if you don't speak a word of Russian.
3. The Cyrillic alphabet needs to dropped, forgotten, and written off as a faux pas of the Dark Ages because it is the worst thing EVER!
4. Tipping? I still don't have a clue.
5. Any woman over the age of 50 should rock the babushka (the shawl). This occured to me before I realized what babuska actually meant, but you get it.
6. Have nothing to do with the tap water.
7. Ditto the toilet paper.
8. Even if you can't communicate with your cab driver at all, have some basic agreement and understanding of the correct airport where he needs to deposit you.
9. Flirting is a universal language. Use it to your advantage at all costs!
10. The two-part episode of Head of the Class, where the gang from the IHP went to the then Soviet Union, was really such a breakthrough in diplomacy.
11. CCCP = USSR. I honestly had no idea.
12. Russian men are frightening and mean.
13. Don't forget your papers anywhere because if you do....
14. It really does all come back to Animal Farm. I had been saying this in my own life forever. I am so glad it is actually applicable somewhere.

(and one from Prague: Ordering simply "a beer" and everyone understands what brand you are getting is such a beautiful thing!)

Welcome Home, Me!

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