|Look closely now
||You know you have been in Russia too long when....
- You have to think twice about throwing away the empty instant
- You carry a plastic shopping bag with you 'just in
- You say he/she is 'on the meeting' (as opposed to the
more proper 'at the' or 'in a' meeting).
- You answer the phone by saying 'allo, allo, allo' before
giving the caller a chance to respond.
- You save table scraps for the cat(s) living in the courtyard.
- When crossing the street, you sprint.
- In winter, you choose your route first by determining which
icicles are least likely to impale you on the head.
- You are impressed with the new model Lada or Volga.
- You let the telephone ring at least 3-4 times before you pick it
up because it is probably a mis-connection or electric fault.
- You hear the radio say it is just at or below freezing outside and
you think it might be nice day for a change.
- You argue with a taxi driver about a fare of 30 rubles to go 2-3
miles while it is snowing.
- You actually know and care who won the last Spartak soccer match.
- You win a shoving match with an old Babushka for a place in line
and you are proud of it.
- You hesitate to put on your seat belt to avoid offending the taxi
driver and the impending 5 minute conversation to explain why you
are putting it on.
- You are pleasantly surprised when there is actually toilet paper
in the WC.
- You look at people's shoes to determine where they are from.
- You're anxiously concerned because you forgot your 'just in
case' disposable hypodermic needle in your other coat.
- You 'automatically' hand in your pepper spray at the
door before going through the metal detector.
- You are pleasantly surprised when there is actually wine in that
bottle of Georgian Kinzamaruli.
- You notice that Flathead's cell phone is smaller than yours and
- Your day seems brighter after seeing that Goon's Mercedes run into
by a pensioner's 'Moskvich'.
- You are thrown off guard when the doorman at the nightclub is
happy to see you.
- Your not sure what to do you when the 'Gai' only asks
you to pay the official fine.
- You wonder what the tax inspector really wants when she says
everything is in order.
- You give a 10% tip only if the waiter has been really exceptional.
- You plan your vacation around those times of the year when they
turn off the hot water.
- You're offended when your American friend gives you a
- You don't notice that Sony sticker on the front of your TV.
- You are relieved when the guy standing next to you on the bus
actually uses Kleenex.
- You are envious that your expat friend has smaller door keys than
- You ask for no ice in your drink.
- When you start using 'davi' instead of 'yes'.
- When you go mushroom and berry picking out of necessity, not
- When you develop a liking for beets.
- When you eat hot dogs for breakfast.
- When you begin to socialize with your driver and/or your cleaning
- When you know what Dostoyevsky's favorite color was.
- When you swear the arms on Gagarin's statue move (see photo).
- When you move to Budapest and think you're in heaven.
- When you start thinking of bread as a good mixer for vodka.
- When you drink the brine from empty pickle jars.
- When you start shopping for products by their country of
- When you go for a walk in the park, Baltika in hand, and its -8
- When it doesn't seem strange to pay a the GAI of $2.25 for
crossing the double line while making an illegal U-turn and $35 for
a microwaved dish of frozen vegetables at a crappy restaurant.
- When your coffee cups routinely smell like vodka.
- When you start to 'feel' public transport and bridge
- When you know more than 60 Olgas
- When you give you business card to social acquaintances.
- When you wear a wool hat in the sauna.
- When you put the empty bottle of wine on the floor in a restaurant.