How Russians changed my life – for Russia Beyond

“After two years studying in England I thought my Russian was fluent. Trying to talk to people in Yaroslavl I quickly realised I understood almost nothing. The teachers at the school got me speaking with more confidence, and I topped up my vocab by listening to Yulia Savicheva and Zemfira on my walkman as I wandered through the streets. I spent a lot of time wandering: at home Tamara Aleksandrovna, the formidable babushka whose spare room I slept in, fed me spaghetti with tangerines in warm milk, and once cut my bath towel into pieces”.

I wrote something for the media project Russia Beyond, as part of their series ‘How Russians changed my life’. Read my article here to learn who helped me to study Russian, why I once spent the night in the back of a police car, how I became an expert in what Russians drink, and where I once made a friend in a puppet theatre. 

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5 thoughts on “How Russians changed my life – for Russia Beyond

  1. I’m just wondering IF there is such a thing as a ‘Russian Tourist Board’. Check them out if they exist because they could do with your help! Hope you are fully enjoying your fatherhood!

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    1. Thanks Norman! There’s an agency ‘Rosturizm’, and you’re right, I definitely need to get in touch with them. Reckon it’ll be a couple of years before the Little Bulgarian lets me out of the house though!

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    1. Thank you Anna! Russia’s vastness is definitely one of the reasons I feel so happy there. Let’s hope we can go back there to explore more before too long – where would you most like to go?

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      1. Hi Jonathan… it’s my 40th birthday in May and the plan was to finally visit my dream destination of Uzbekistan! I have been wanting to go for years and was hoping to treat myself to visit. Obviously not happening now! So I guess when COVID is over I might do a jaunt through Central Asia, although Georgia and the Caucasus has piqued my interest of late too!

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