Why So Many Manholes?

The Village is a Russian-language publication in Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Kiev that seeks to inform locals about their various cities, their upcoming events, changes, and history. The following is one interesting entry from a...

Returning Home after Five Months in St. Petersburg

As part of its September issue, the Russian edition of Esquire magazine turned its focus from celebrities to “ordinary people,” including Vasily Ilyn, a retired farmer from a village in rural Russia. The issue includes...

Why do Russians Clap on Planes?

The Village is a Russian-language publication in Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Kiev that seeks to inform locals about their various cities, their upcoming events, changes, and history. The following are two interesting entries from a...

Why is the Metro…

The Village is a Russian-language publication in Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Kiev that seeks to inform locals about their various cities, their upcoming events, changes, and history. The following are two interesting entries from a...

“Special Beshbarmak” in Bishkek

Ozgocho Beshbarmak Café Address: Hекрасова 9А (south side of Osh Bazaar) Hours: 7:30am-11:00pm Prices: 165-195 som for beshbarmak This past weekend, I checked out a restaurant that offers 12 variations of one of Kyrgyzstan’s most...

Lenta in St.Petersburg

Лента/ Lenta ул. Уральская, 29 Open 24 hours “Hey, if you need to buy groceries, cleaning supplies, or whatever else, go to Lenta. It’s basically a Russian version of Wal-Mart!” My classmates have frequently expressed...

Acclimating to Life in Kyiv, Ukraine

Today marks my third day in Kyiv, where I will spend the next couple of months studying Russian language at the NovaMova International Language School and interning at the Institute of World Policy.  Two of...

Who are You in Kyrgyzstan

The latest online video to have gone viral is “What Kind of Asian Are You?”, a comedy sketch co-directed by David Neptune and Ken Tanaka for YouTube’s Comedy Week extravaganza, a program that features live...

Fortune Telling in Bishkek

Recently, a colleague and I went to a yasnovidyashi, a Kyrgyz fortuneteller (the name actually translates to “Clear Seer”), for the first time. Why? We’ve never done it before, we were looking for a new...

Banya in Bishkek

Zhirgal Banya Hours of Operation: Mon, Tues, Thurs: 9am-11pm, Wed: 12pm-11pm, Fri: 7am-11pm, Sat, Sun: 7am-11pm Address: Corner of Ibraimov and Toktogul Price: Adults: 250 Som, Kids (1-12 years old): 150 Som Desperate times call...

Chechen Journalist Calls Kyrgyzstan Her “Homeland”

Chechen Journalist Kamila Zhabrailova Talks about the Chechen-Kyrgyz Experience In Bishkek this past week, Chechen journalist Kamila Zhabrailova talked to SRAS students about the history and culture of Chechnya, the Chechen disapora in Kyrgyzstan, and...

Shopping and Miscommunication in St. Petersburg

My first two days in Russia were spent rationing the granola bars, dried fruit, and airplane pretzel packets I had brought with me in my carry-on bag. This was despite the fact that I have...

Ideas of What’s Rude and Polite in Russia

If you’re like me, you tried to prepare for life in a foreign country by researching important ways the new culture differs from your home culture. While research can shed light on some of the...

Birthday Parties in Vladivostok

The Golden Century/Золотой Век (or anywhere there are banquets!) Ул. Кирова, д. 60 10 am – 12 am Daily Free (paid for by celebrant)! Besides the New Year, Victory Day and perhaps the 8th of...

“Culture Fatigue” in Vladivostok

Russia, Kyrgyzstan, and Ukraine contain cultures and languages very different from those most Americans are used to. SRAS believes that this makes these countries especially good locations for study abroad – it forces one to...

Culture Shock: A Kyrgyz in the States

The more a person knows, the more he or she is supposed to learn and be shocked by his/her discoveries. Before coming to the United States, I got in touch with some people who had been...

Learning and Culture Shock in St. Petersburg

Studying Outside the Box: A brief guide to culture shock and the meaning of learning and “fluency.” I use my thumbnail to scratch a viewing patch out of the ice that has accumulated on the...