14 Lessons Learned After One Month in Russia
To celebrate my one-month anniversary in Moscow, I decided to start a blog series of the lessons learned in Russia. I have been to Moscow before, yes, but under the close watch of a professor in a large group. Traveling alone is an entirely different experience. Especially if you do not know the language! A month ago yesterday, I arrived in Moscow armed with the ability to read Cyrillic, say “I do not eat meat” and a whole lot of hope.
While traveling in the past I attempted to keep an elaborate, detailed journal. That usually lasts a week and a half. In hopes of keeping up with it this time, I have simply documented daily “lessons”. I have been moderately successful. Here is what I have so far:
Day 1: Never walk out of a door if you aren’t sure of the way back in.
Day 2: Connect with the people around you.
Day 3: Everyone appreciates laughing at hand gestures.
Day 8: Loosing count is a good sign.
Day 9: Invite yourself along on the adventure!
Day 10: Every stranger / strange person is a learning experience.
Day 11: Think critically.
Day 14: One great friend is worth millions.
Day 15: Persevere.
Day 16: A sense of accomplishment opens the doors to happiness.
Day 20: People will find you interesting just by being yourself. Even with a language barrier.
Day 21: The world is so full of kind people. (Be grateful!)
Day 28: Speak your mind.
Day 31: Be sure to note your small successes (ie, ordering coffee and repaying your phone) as progress! Or: You don’t have to understand everything to understand.
Starting from the beginning is scary, but no two days hold the same lesson! I am excited to see what the next month has in store 🙂
Sam Cramer is currently studying Russian at Liden & Denz Moscow
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