Monday, January 30, 2012


девушка-  You are tall.  You are beautiful.  ALL of you!  For the most part, you have long, straight, brunette or blonde, red doesn't seem to exist here.  You are thin, or at least in really great shape.  Very few of you are overweight.  You wear fur.  And amazing shoes.  Only the most stylish heels and knee high boots.  Even in this ridiculously icy city.  Unfortunately, you will not age well.  Perhaps it's because of the extreme winter temperatures... or the fatty, meaty food that you eat.

мальчик-  You are average height.  You are not beautiful.  You look like the stereotypical Russian bad guys in movies.  You wear black.  You are clean shaved.  So many of you have scars.  You don't seem to be in great shape like the women.  But even if you are lacking in good looks, you make up for it with your classic chivalry. You hold doors, you help women with their jackets.  You buy flowers, give up your seat on the metro, and always carry your lady-friend's bag.  At first I took many second looks at dangerous-looking men with designer purses... but a beautiful woman is always somewhere close. 

As cold as the people seem on the outside... never smiling and always in a hurry... they are so nice as soon as you start getting to know them.  If you take a moment to say hello and ask how they are doing, most of them will immediately be friendly.  Except the waitresses at our favorite restaurant, of course.  They're still pretty cold, even though we eat there every day. One thing that is surprising to me about this large city, is that I've found everyone to look the same.  I went shopping with my host's niece, and I lost track of her in a very small store.  How do you lose a tall, beautiful woman in a small store?  You fill it with tall beautiful women.  It doesn't help that they all dress the same.  But they all dress well.  All of the people here are very well dressed, men and women.  It's amazing.  I thought I brought my nicer clothing with me, but I look homeless.  It's true.

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