Home Safe and Sound

Hello!

Sorry that I haven’t posted for several days! I can tell you that traveling 7,500 miles really takes it out of a person!

We had a mini trip in Frankfurt, Germany that was very nice. The hotel we stayed at was very modern and it was a relief to be so close to McDonald’s and other “American” food (still no ice in the sodas though!). It was bittersweet, however, because Deana didn’t have her kids so we would just look at each other and talk about them! LOL.

Some more details about Russia:

Although it seems to snow 24/7, the city we stayed in was extremely good at clearing the roads of snow, which seemed to never have any! Maybe they are so good at it since winter covers 5 months out of the year…..

The street lights in Russia are cool – they look just like ours, but when the red light is about to turn green, the yellow light appears (this is true for Germany, too). For the first few days, before I noticed this, I wondered how our drivers knew to take off right when the light turned.

Russians do not have a word for cousin – instead, they call these relatives brothers and sisters.

Personal space is very different in Europe, that’s for sure. But its especially close in Russia! We went to a SuperMarket (and this time it was very big, very packed, and a serious place to shop!). The carts were again 1/4 the size of American carts, and it was interesting to note that the back wheels were not fixed like ours, but instead swiveled just like the front ones. I soon learned why – it was so packed in the store you needed to be able to push the cart at angles, sideways, etc. Further, Russians don’t notice if you are on top of them! In fact, I totally ran over a person’s foot with my cart (hard too!) and they didn’t even turn around! Not as fun when YOU are the one being assaulted!

When you shop in Russia grocery stores, not only do you have to bag your own goods, but they charge you for the bags!

That’s all I can think of now, have to have another cup of coffee! The transition back to American time has been very difficult for us! We wake up feeling like its time to go to bed (like right now. It’s 9:30 pm in Russia and I so feel like going back to bed even though I just woke up!). And last night D and I kept saying we should really try to go to bed, but we were wide awake….until after 2:30! Yikes. Waking up for work tomorrow will be fun, I am sure!

Talk to you soon!

G

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