Thursday, October 06, 2005

My personal F-bomb day…

Okay, so I’m normally a person who likes to curse a lot –probably more than I should, but I love the English language and especially our curse words. However, while I have been here in Russia, which has now been a week, I’ve really watched my language. The only time up till today that I even used one curse word was when Lucy and I were talking about the difference between what is acceptable to say in America and what is acceptable to say in Russia. For example, I received a book before I left home with many Russian curse phrases (I won’t say who I received it from, but they know…) and when Lucy came across it in my room, she freaked. Many of the sayings that are in the book are not said here or even considered acceptable in conversations amongst friends, because they can land you in prison (don’t worry, I wasn’t planning on using ANY of them, so I shouldn’t end up in prison because of them!). Yet, English curses are okay to say and everyone understands them, which means I’ve been stricken of my arsenal, but don’t worry I’m rather resourceful. So as I said, I’ve been rather good about watching what I say and have chosen my words very carefully but today I couldn’t do it anymore.

Every other word out of my mouth, like usual at home, has been the F-word along with a string of my favorite sayings. Still, though, I’ve only said them when alone or with people I know that it’s okay too. I never thought that I would miss those words so much; saying them has made me feel even more at home and comfortable here. One of the main reasons I think that today was a good day to remember them was because I finally got to meet Kristin (the girl from Norway). We’ve been trying desperately to meet since I arrived last week and every opportunity has been denied to us, so finally we chose a day and time and decided nothing would interfere with it. We met today at 5pm close to the University’s main building. Remember we’ve never really seen each other, so I wore one of my Garbage shirts to stick out in the crowd. While I was standing waiting for her to arrive, I kept trying to see if anyone was paying attention to my shirt, and then sure enough a little dark-haired female walked up to me smiling. Now you have to imagine this was a very awkward meeting at first, because unless you’re psychotic or a pedophile you don’t often meet up with people that you’ve met on the internet. Yet, it was also a very relaxed meeting, because I felt that I was meeting up with an old friend of mine. She was exactly what I imagined her to be. She and I mesh perfectly when it comes to beliefs and just general humor; in fact, she reminds me a lot of one of my good female friends from home, Julie.

Kristin and I decided that we would walk around, which we later came to realize that in Russia “going for a walk” means a lot more then it does anywhere else, and then get something to eat. We talked about everything from Rostov and the people to our own countries and what we missed or didn’t miss about them. We both feel sort of ungrateful because here we are both “well-off” in regards of money. You see in Russia, one American dollar equals about 30 rubles and everything is very cheap; take for example, in America a dinner (like the one Kristin and I had), which consist of a rather big salad and something to drink would cost between 6 to 8 dollars but here it cost me like 3.50. It is odd for me to feel that I don’t need to worry about money here, because at home, although I was making okay money and never was in need of anything, I always worried about what my checkbook said. Kristin was the same way, so we both see what is around us and appreciate where we come from and the fact that we are able to feel so comfortable here.

I have to say that now that I finally got to see Kristin and speak with her, I fell much more at home. We are going to try and get together again this week, and once I have a cell phone this should become much easier. Oh and going back to what I started this post off about, Kristin was very obliged to sit and listen to my curses and share some of her own. This was a very therapeutic experience for me, and I’m sure that she and I will share many more of these sessions…


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