Those Strange Russians

By: Maria Moshkina

Russian soul is a mystery for other cultures. Our people are hardworking, patient, never loosing hope for better life. Russians are talented nation. Russia gave world beautiful names of Pushkin and Lermontov, Chaikovsky and Repin, thousands of names of world famous poets, writers, composers, scientists. It is not easy to understand Russian people, but once you've understood them, you are one of them once and forever. Russians are reach and poor at the same time, simple and complicated, weak and strong. Some Russian characters make foreigners come to Russia again and again. Russian traditions are special and some of them can seem wild to others but Russian people treat them very much.

Russian romanticism and patience
The harder is the life of Russian, the stronger beats the heart of romantic in his chest. Russian romanticism is unconquerable, unsinkable and matchless. One more Russian character is patience. As shows History, hardly ever any nation suffered as much and was as patient and passive as Russians. We got used to tyranny, long sufferings and authority's power. Russians are able to wait and trust in better in conditions, which would seem unbearable to any other nation.

Money
Russians don't value money much. It is of course better with money than without them, but to have very much money is bad, otherwise the reaction can be unexpected. Rich are compared to unfair and greedy people. If you are rich - don't ever boast with that. Russian people leave from salary to salary and often borrow money from neighbors. Russian people are a bit lazy and don't earn much, but that makes them get away from high-speed race of money earning. They can stop and look around in time and see the beauty of the world and people around.

Men and women
Russian girls are one of the most beautiful women in the world. Not everyone knows about it, but in Russia during long time power is concentrated in women's arms. Russian women don't even need to fight, because men give up to them flightless. In such spheres as politics rule men, but best teachers, doctors, engineers are women. If a man is a head of the family, then a woman is its neck. Neck tells the head where to turn and watch. Not occasionally we call Russia - "Mother Russia"

Hospitality
Russian hospitality is known all over the world. Russian people are glad to welcome its guests and care of them as is they are their relatives. In Saint-Petersburg you can find many places to stay in. You can stay by friends, but if it is not possible you can rent a room. There is a wide range of hospitable hotels here - from big and expencive - to lillle and rather cheep. Grand Hotel Europe is a 5-star luxury hotel, Nevsky Hotels Group offers a net of cozy mini-hotels - "Aster", "Express", "Central", "Mojka 5", "De Luxe" etc.

Holidays
Russians celebrate the forgotten holidays - Troisa, Maslenitsa, and Easter. They sing Russian folk songs and chastushki, dance Barinya and perform khorovods, ride in troikas. Traditional Russian cooking is world-famous for such dishes as okroshka, shi, pelment, kurnik, kvass. We begin to build and reconstruct churches. The example of it is the building of the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow. It is the symbol of reviving human feelings, national pride and patriotism.

January 1 New Year, major gift holiday in Russia, Ukraine
The New Year holiday is very popular, especially with children. In every house there is a fir tree. The presents are supposed to be sent by Father Frost (Santa Claus) and the Snow Maiden. People usually see the New Year in sitting round a festive table. They are addressing New Year's greetings and good wishes to one another. They are raising their wineglasses filled with sparkling champagne.

January 7 Russian Christian Christmas, gift holiday in Russia, Ukraine
The Russian Christmas is celebrated on the 7th of January. In the traditional Russian Christmas, special prayers are said and people fast, sometimes for 39 days, until January 6th Christmas Eve, when the first evening star in appears in the sky. Then begins a twelve course supper in honor of each of the twelve apostles - fish, beet soup (Borsch), cabbage stuffed with millet, cooked dried fruit and much more. On Christmas Day, hymns and carols are sung. People gather in churches which have been decorated with the usual Christmas trees (Yelka), flowers and colored lights. Christmas dinner includes a variety of different meats - goose and suckling pig are favorites.

February 14 Valentine's Day, the western sweetheart's holiday, celebrated all around the world

February 23 Day of Motherland defender (Men's Day)

March 8 Women's Day
This is the day of paying tribute to women. On March 8, men give women flowers and presents, and do the entire domestic work around the house and in the kitchen. 'In some countries this day is called Mother's Day and is celebrated in spring.

April 1 Yumorina
Yumorina is April Fools' Day and takes place on April 1. On this day you can meet someone who will try to pull your leg. Everyone try to play a trick and jokes with others and make them believe their

One curious thing about Russia
It is interesting to observe foreigners coming from rich countries to Russia for the first time - they are shocked by everything they see here. But then they stop and think it over. Something catches them in this badly organized for normal life country. And it is not rare that they come back again and again to feel Russian soul, its traditions and customs. They are ready to rough it to fell Russian collectivism, hospitality, friendliness and disorganization, but also to feel how wonderful it is - just to live.

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