When to read memoirs

… impression of the book  “A backpack, a bear, and 8 craters of vodka”

I thought that the best time to read biographies and memoirs was retirement.

It seems I was mistaken.

More than a month ago I received an announcement in my work email. Bridgewater University (or their bookclub) invited people to talk with the author about a book  “A backpack, a bear, and 8 craters of vodka” by Lev Golinkin. The  book is about the immigration of a Jewish family from the Soviet (back then) Ukraine.

Everything about Russia and Ukraine is on air now, so I decided to read it.

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April 11, 2022

47th day of the war

Before the beginning  of the war I started my day of scrolling Instagram or FB.

Now I start and end my day with YouTube. I follow “Popular politics”, Живой гвоздь (Live Nail), Yuri Shvets,  Maйкл Наки (Michael Naki), ICTV TV Channel, Alexey Arestovich, Ivan Yakovina, Dmitry Gordon. I listen to the opinions of Valery Solovey (political scientist), Dmitry Potapenko (businessman and economist) and Grigory Yudin (political scientist) and others.

It’s getting a little overwhelming.

I am confused about the channels, ranks/ specialties of the guests, I no longer remember which Minister of Military Affairs of Russia was a simple driver during his service in the army. But I watch/listen and try to figure it out.

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4 weeks since the  beginning of the war

“If you are not interested in politics, be sure that it is interested in you and will come to your house with troubles.”

 Natalia Ivannikova (Ukrainian mom, with her children and dog now in Germany).

4 weeks have passed since the beginning of the war in Ukraine

It is believed that a person gets used to everything.

But you can’t get used to war. 

I have never associated myself with the word “depression”. I don’t want to use it even now.

But the situation has changed all of us. I don’t cry 24/7 (a little bit less), I try not to argue with my friends and relatives (about the causes of the war), I live my almost usual life, but I  don’t pretend that nothing is happening.

Since the beginning of the war I have started following a few new telegram and YouTube channels. There, brave Russian and Ukrainian  journalists talk to politicians , other journalists, and economists about the situation around the war. I really want to hear their predictions about when the war will end. I learned a lot about president Putin. And how he became  president.

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who to support, who to believe…

Every day my colleagues and library visitors (fortunately, not all) ask “how are you doing? How are your family and friends in Russia?” And I appreciate it.

But I really don’t know what and how to answer.

The fact is that my Russian friends and family (although not all of them) are much more calm than I am.

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Ingrid about Donbass

Over the past few days, I have heard different opinions about the causes of the military conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

In 2014, I tried to adapt to America and the events in Donetsk and Lugansk passed by my attention. Now they are in the center of incredible, difficult to believe activities.

While my body’s defense reaction is tears, work and cooking, my FB friend Ingrid wrote a post.

I deeply respect this young, intelligent woman. She is a translator and founder of Wolf Games (computer games) and my first guest on the talk show “Russian speaks”.

Here’s  the article with her permission.

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Feb 24, scary.

I was surprised by messages from people with whom I rarely correspond. Both asked about my opinion about the events in Russia. And not only my opinion – the opinion of my family, friends.

6 am, just opened my eyes, what’s going on?

I’d rather not know…

For the first time in my almost 50 years, I am very scared.

Not for myself, but for the boys, for the sons, for their mothers.

What’s happening? And most importantly – why?

21st century. Russia. War. Is this what my grandfathers died for?

How to work today if my eyes are red from tears?

For the first time in my life, I’m ashamed that I’m Russian.

All today’s flights from Moscow to the southern regions of the country have been canceled. Russian authorities have temporarily restricted flights to Sochi, Krasnodar, Rostov, Lipetsk, Belgorod, Simferopol, Gelendzhik, Stavropol, Astrakhan.

It is unknown when flights will resume.

In the Belgorod and Bryansk regions, education in kindergartens and schools on the border with Ukraine has been suspended.

Sberbank is included in the list of blocking US sanctions. The Sberbank suspended operations with all securities.

Several Tomichs came out with posters to Novosobornaya Square against the war in Ukraine.

I wish everyone a peaceful sky.

Invitation to “Russian Speaks”

I am looking for new amazing  guests to be on my show “Russian Speaks”. 

Russian Speaks is a series of meetings with interesting people.

You can be an entrepreneur or a driven employee, you can be someone who has just changed careers, or someone who is a professional with many years of experience. 

I’m interested in how you became who you are.

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Mice and rabbits

or who/what lives in your garden?

-Where are you going?- Daniel asked as I struggled with a jacket over my hoodie.

-Feed the rabbits, – I replied.

And indeed, where can you go wearing home- fleece- sweatpants, hoodies with a hood on your head and a thin jacket in sub-zero weather and without makeup?

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Chronicles of chaos, January 9, Kazakhstan

Сontinuation of the chronicles of chaos.

IG posts from a person who lives in Almaty, Kazakhstan. 

Maria (@eng_focus) is an English and Russian tutor, a songwriter, a singer, and an inspiring person.  Last summer she was a guest of my zoom talk show “Russian Speaks”.

Here, I am publishing “chronicles of chaos” (as she calls it) and with her permission. Also I leave a link to her IG account. 

Don’t get hard on me, I’m translating this with an online translator, it’s faster. 😄

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