hi, sorry for invading ;-) I was accused of pro-russian and apparently anti-british attitude in livejournal_uk community, so I decided to answer your question here if you dont mind.
"So, were you driving in Russia without a licence? How much does it cost in bribes to do that?? ;)"
I was driving here but not much, I had a friend who drove his car for 2 years without his driving license (he kept failing the test :) and was stopped just once for crossing the double line, he had to pay 500 rubles which is around 10 quid. It has become a little bit more complicated and expensive in Moscow (still up to 100 USD) recently but outside Moscow it is still the same.
That's OK, and I did put ";)" after my questions which I take as a smile and a wink.
It's OK having a pro-Russian attitude - after all you say you come from there. I actually went there myself once, long long ago, as a school kid on a trip to St Petersburg and Moscow. I was impressed at the time, although a group of us did bunk off some of the more boring organised trips to play in a park / boating lake. I'd like to go back sometime to see the changes ... it must be 1970 or 71 when I was there!
If you want any info about Cardiff before you get here I can have a look for some stuff ... althoufgh you sound like you've got it organised already :)
Yep it has changed a lot. I havent been there in 70s yet though. ;-))) So you'd have to come over and compare yourself. Did you study Russian? I wonder, why did your school decide to take kids to a Communist country? :-)
Do I really sound like I've organised everything? hehe, did my little provication in lj_uk convince you in this? Erm... to say the truth, I dont even know what I'm going to do there....
I mean, priority number 1 is to be with my boyfriend who has been visiting me and spending all his student's loan on Russian visas and airtickets over the past years. Plus, I love Cardiff (I've been there in 2002 for a week or so ;) and I had studied and written a dissertation on Welsh identity and Celtic traditions in Wales... so I thought it might be a good idea to spend there some time after I've read so many books on Wales and watched so many Welsh films that I seem to be picking up the Welsh accent (mixed up with my Russian one and a bit of Americanisms (cant do anything about it))...
I've missed all possible studying opportunities this year (due to my disorganised Russian nature) so I'm currently looking and apllying for a job... However being a non-EU citizen and a 'suspicious' Russian doesnt help in my search, hehe. So I'd probably end up doing freelance jobs for Moscow companies...
Thanks for your offer anyway. :-)
I'm actually looking for a number of things in Cardiff. :-) Another one is a flat. Small but modern in a good neighbourhood, not far from Bussiness School of Cardiff Uni (my bfr studies there), possibly in a tall apartment building, big bath, good heating (preferably floor heating) but still cheap. Do I sound naive?
2004-08-17 01:10 am (UTC)
Re: I'm Yulia by the way... :-)
Do I sound naive?
:) Well ...maybe a bit :) I think "Small but modern in a good neighbourhood" and "cheap" are contradictory :) Is this something your bf is looking for or do you want me to look for lists of flats? If so I'd need an idea of you budget for it ... I may end up laughing at the figures :) but I'll do my best if you want. Is there a reason you don't want to move in with youur bf? [and if you don't want to talk about personal stuff it's OK to just tell me so :) ]
Oh no I think I didnt explain myself well enough. I am actually going to stay with my boyfriend but he is not in Cardiff yet... he is from Bakewell and just studies in Cardiff (his mom is Welsh tho). He took one academic year out to be longer in Moscow while I graduate so thats why we dont have our living sorted yet. 400 quid per month is the sum we are thinking of...
2004-08-17 01:36 am (UTC)
Re: I'm Yulia by the way... :-)
Did you study Russian?
I'm tempted to say Niet :) We did learn a few words and the alphabet and a little about the country but not that much :) There are very few Russian words I still remember ... Da, Niet, Spasseba (sp?), Pajousta(sp??), Berioshka(sp - tourist shop accepting only foreign money) ... erm ... I'm sure there are a few more words lurking in my brain but cannot think of them now :)
I was very impressed by St Petersburg, all the statues and parks were amasing. There were some fountains (forget where now) and the water shot up at random when you walked in some gravel bit :) And palaces and towers and W-i-d-e streets and "strange" people :)))
Your English seems very good - hope that doesn't sound patronising :) I probably appreciate the problems of working in a strange language better than most as I worked in Luxembourg for four years in a very multi-lingual environment :) we sometimes had words from four or five languages in the same sentence :)
Спасибо, Пожалуйста, Березка (also means a birch-tree)
Fountains at Petergof, wide streets in St Petersburg???? maybe in Moscow?
do you speak any foreign language? ;-)
thanks for a compliment
The first line of that is complete gibberish :) must be Russian eh? You are using characters that, at least with the e-maiil notification on my work PC, are not recognised by me. Lots of upper case Ds with a horizontal line through the middle! I'll try on the LJ site later, but I don't have that open right now.
Erm ... well it must be about 33 years ago when I went so there could easily be some confusion about things :) we stayed in St Petersburg for a week and then went by train overnight to Moscow for another week. Everything was strange and I certainly remember wide streets, but yes it could well have been Moscow. I remember swiming in the sea in the gulf of Finland - bitter but invigorating!
Je parle une petie peu de Francais
Ich sprecke eine zehr klein deutche
I can talk American - from sidewalk to elevator man :)
Erm ... about it :)
[please excuse the spelling errors - I'm even bad at spelling in English :) ]
My French came from school days when I scraped through the 16-year-old's exam in French but it did get stretched in Luxembourg 'cos I had to attend long technical discussions in French. Since the org. was officially bilingual I had to do my best to understand but I checked that I understood what the technical specifications of what they wanted me to do by reviewing what I thought they wanted in English - if they agreed with that and it was wrong then it was their fault for agree with me :)
My German is enough to get around German / Austrian ski resorts ... Zwei bier bitter :) haben zei ein zimmer frei? etc the typical auslander phrases.
Other than that it's just odd words that sometimes come to mind when needed :)
I did find during my four years in Luxembourg that my English got worse :) I was using simpler sentence construction, not using colloquial phrases and a much reduced vocabulary. Some of the guys I worked with had English as their fourth or fifth language! So different from the typical British attitude - if Jonnie Foreigner doesn't understand you then S P E A K S L O W E R A N D LOUDER :)))
Oh, the first line looks better when I see the comment ... it's proper Russian characters but still .... ah .... dawning light .... that's please, thank you and the tourist shop isn't it?
*light bulb goes off above me then falls over and breaks on my head*
Don't worry, things get through eventually :)
I was accused of pro-russian and apparently anti-british attitude in livejournal_uk community
I think he was more concerned about you breaking the law and came across a bit strong to you
Hmm ... I guess there is a certain amount of anti-russian feeling. For many years "you" were the big bad guys going to drop nuclear bombs on us all (although I always thought it was far more likely that the US would start something accidentally) and now the only russian news we are lkkely to hear about is bombings, killings, wars and criminal activity. Not a very good advertisment for your beautiful country :) Some of the british newspapers have quite zenophobic attitudes to outsiders (even if they've lived here for years)
Not a simple subject to go into when I should be working :) Maybe we should talk some more some time?
That should of course be xenophobia :)
*hits head on keyboard*
Whew! I thought it was fear of Xena, Warrior Princess for a brief moment! ;-)
As opposed to "fear of Zen Bhudists"?
Oh, in case you are wondering why this thread stormed off in such a different direction, it is the continuation of a discussion on a community but with less people who are going to jump on "Anti-British" statements.
Yep I worked it out what he wanted to stress at, I thought the funniest thing was ... that he is a Russian living in the UK ;-) I was just surprised he was so hush on me and I was damn enough not to look at his user info before replying.
Yep unfortunately xenophobia is quite a common feature of most (if not every) nation. My British boyfriend has to put up with it over here and me staying with him in the UK is kinda a little revenge :-) With all this politics in Iraq as well as historical wars bw Russia and GB (Crimean war etc) Britain is not very popular here either. When you first travelled here, your relatives probably tried to put you off from travelling here because of the foreseen dangers of our 'uncultured' country. In a similar way, I'm told that I'm going to freeze to death in a British house and is constantly told to keep away from football fans etc. Yep, I've seen news about Russia on British TV which kept me amused sometimes. 'Informational wars' are going on over here too, seems like they like to choose news about British manics and disasters. ;-)
Well truth to tell I think it is a function of all news services -- something bad happens and it's "news" but something good is just "stuff that happens" :) I think the BBC is better than a lot of other broardcasters ... have you ever been to the USA? Their news services are just so US centric it is unbelievable; "local" news is for the town you are in, "wider area" news is for the rest of that state and maybe the next state(s), "world" news is for the rest of the US ... and maybe something from another country. I've heard it said that the only time Americans learn geography is when their country invades another one :)
It is, of course, dangerous to generalise about nationalities but Americans are very US centric. Having said that, there are a number of Americans with a much broarder perspective - you only have to look through my friends list to find a number of thoughtful, inteligent people ... I guess I wouldn't have friended them otherwise :)
When I was in Russia I found everyone very friendly. One day in Moscow we'd escaped from a tour of Lenin's this that and the other and went on a boating lake. Afterwards we went and played about in a park 'till some old ladies came over to tell us of for mucking about. Once they realised we were Engliht they were so friendly and gave us little badge things ... or were they secret microphones from the KGB and we never realised? ;)))
The other thing I remember is the underground railway - like art galleries at some of the stations and absolutely spotlessly clean. Quite different from what I was used to on the London Underground. Also the cost - something like 4 kopeks (sp?) to travel anywhere on the train. oh and the tickets on the busses - you had to tear off a ticket yourself and put the right money into a plastic case. That would never have worked in Britain!
As I often say "All generalisations are probably wrong ... including this one."
hehe I pretty much agree with you.
Those ladies were obviously the KGB agents, if not - they probably had to stay a couple of years in prison for talking to you :-)
Our metro is still the same, marble stations, tourists taking pictures of it. The prices have changed though - 10 rubles and they promise to devide it into zones like in London (hope they are just joking about this one).
Cant remember the bus system. Now you have to buy a 15 ruble ticket from the driver but you dont have to, occasionaly you pay a fine of 100 rubles if you get caught :-) Just a year ago the fine was almost the same price as the ticket so I never bothered buying it. Was pretty much dissapointed with British buses :-)))) although... I've seen the Brits cheating in the trains!!!! :-) hehe