My First Time Abroad

   When asked about how my trip is going, I am usually at a loss for words at first. This trip holds the distinction of not only being my first time inside Russia, but also the first time I have ever left the United States. I did not even have a passport until I decided …

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First Impressions

Going to Russia was always a part of my four-year plan for college. I knew that majoring in Russian meant that I would go to Russia for a semester. This information was both a source of incredible excitement, but also a lot of anxiety. I love to travel and exploring different cultures and languages but …

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Seeing the Warmer Side of Russia

Like many students who decide to study Russian, I fell in love with the country’s literature before I began studying the language. The prospect of developing the skills to read that literature in its original format can be a great motivator. However, the pantheon of great Russian writers can also have a chilling effect for …

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Shuba Hunting

In Russian, the word “шуба” [shoo-ba], plural: шуби [shoo-bee] has two meanings. 1. A fur coat 2. A salad that consists of alternating layers of mayonnaise, beats, and salted herring fish. The full name of the salad is translated as “Herring under a fur coat.” To most Americans, both are foreign and puzzling. Here we’re …

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I Get By With A Little Help From My Host Mom

I have been blessed over these past few months with a wonderful host family experience. My host mom, Natasha, is not only great at keeping me fed and safe, but she has shown me kindness and friendship in ways that I would have never expected from her. Before I left for Russia, my professor in …

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On my love for the Moscow Metro

It probably sounds silly, how much I love the metro. Maybe it's due to the small town girl effect- I come from a town of 10,000 that used to have a taxi, but other than that, has no public transport whatsoever. I think it's more than that, though. I remember clearly sitting at orientation, being …

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