Could We Be Doing More to Minimize Our Use of Plastic?

Protecting Our Planet: From a Cultural Perspective It was the weekend before my departure to Belgrade, Serbia that I watched the documentary ‘A Plastic Ocean,' and couldn't believe how rapid our environment is degrading and how much effort was lacking towards its protection. The proliferation of plastic products is developing a "disposable" lifestyle and an …

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Welcome to Sarajevo

I arrived in Sarajevo on June 12th of 2015. Within an hour of landing I found myself in an apartment building in Alipašno Polje, about 20 minutes by tram outside of the city, with a family that did not speak a word of English. While I have worked hard to teach myself Bosnian (or “BCS” …

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A Week with a Russian Babushka

Of course they warned us. Before departing from Washington, D.C. we were told all about the frank and honest nature of the Russian people, the worlds of difference between our modes of self-expression, forms of etiquette, and so on. The honesty received from our Resident Directors and other American Councils staff during orientation was much …

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No, Not the Telephone

Not every memorable moment abroad is related to an eye-opening experience or an event that changes your understanding of yourself or the world around you. Those moments happen, of course, more frequently when you’ve just arrived in a new country and more sporadically as time passes by and you become more acquainted with the new …

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A Californian Braving the Russian Winter

I was warned that Russia would be cold but I guess I didn’t quite understand what it means to be cold. When I was home in California before I left for Russia I bought a coat, a pair of gloves, and my mom showered me in sweaters and hats concerned about her little California girl …

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Living Abroad: Changing the Way you See the World

The first time I went to Russia was in the spring of 2006. I lived in Saint Petersburg, with a host family for a week on the outskirts of the city in a Soviet-era apartment building. During the day, I would go to school in a different part of the city, but always the same …

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