I am, thus I am…

Coffee-iconDisclaimer: I am not an expert on Russia. No one claims that I am in the western society or media, thus I am not an expert. My knowledge has been erroneously gathered through first hand experience within living amongst the Russian people. The results that I portend are not final and perfected. I distaste the title expert and have no use for experts. But I will use the term loosely to entice your needs to learn about Russia. Thus I am an officially, an unofficial expert on Russia, through simple osmotic surveillance methods and techniques…

It struck me today that I am an expert on Russians. Maybe not expert like a Russian is, but as far as 99.9% of the western world, I am an expert on Russians. I am, thus I am…

I read many articles about Russia from so called experts on Russia, but 99.9% of them have not anywhere near the expertise that I have with Russians in everyday life. From one of the biggest cities (Moscow) in the world, to a village (Sunrise to Freedom) so small that it is lucky to have water half the time, much less electricity.

My best female friend is my sweet pea Svetlana and my best male friend is Vova from the Russian Village. My best non human friend is Boza, the Russian doggy.

This Christmas that is fast approaching, is my 10th Christmas in Russia. Ten years amongst the natives of the largest country in the world and ten years of living full time with them.

That is the key statement, 10 years full time in Russia. Not a few months a year as many so called experts acclaim to do, but ten years non stop. Ten years of dealing with bureaucracy, love, hate, happiness, sadness, prejudices and or a thousand other issues. All good and or bad.

I will state for the record that Russia is a huge ass country and to see it all is an undertaking of magnitudes that I doubt I could handle and or finance. Therefore, that said, I want to travel all of Russia regardless of any restrictions in my abilities…

I weigh and measure how much I let on about my Americanisms. I have many stores that I deal with and they do not have any idea that I am not Russian. I get in, buy and leave, as 90% of any Russian does. No words or questions and it makes life smooth.

There are stores that I have to have help and they are the ones who know, who and what I am. I am careful about who I let know. For one out of a million Russians get a little bit of an attitude at times. In fact, I do not blame them and I deserve the backlash.

For I am one of those damn Americans, who support the sanctions against Russia! Right?

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Thus, when I speak about what Russian do and what Russians are like, I am talking from experience and interaction as a daily routine.

Not as someone who walks into the Moscow airport and says, “I have been to Russia, I am an expert!” Or they live in an ivory tower, they work in an ivory tower and they only go to expat approved areas, such as expat bars. And they only walk around within a group of expats, just like themselves.

I have never in 10 years been to anything that has to do with expats in Russia and it looks like I never will. I came to Russia to see Russia.

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Yesterday I bought a few item from a store that I had never been to. It was an item that extended beyond my abilities (which are not extensive at all,) to communicate. So I had to use a paper with words to describe. The young man knew some English and between us both, I walked out of the store with my item. He was happy and I was happy and I knew by his reactions to me being American, I can go back and shop there in comfort.

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I very rarely go to McDonald’s, but yesterday I bought “two cheese burgers to go” (Dva cheeseburgers idti.) The young lady never flinched and never knew I was anything but a big grouchy bear. She asked me for coins and I let her pick through what I had in my pocket and she was happy. I always hold out my coin and let the cashier gather what she wants. I learned the trick from other dedushka (grouchy grandpa) type guys, such as I. 🙂

For your information; two cheeseburgers cost me 110 rubles. That equates into $1.70. Don’t call me a liar for the real price and your price sucks. Russia is the third cheapest place on Earth for eating at McDonald’s. (Ukraine and Venezuela are cheaper!)

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Now I am going to go and walk the Russian dog called Boza. He has been a good boy all morning and it is snowing. Boza loves snow and we will go play. I think that I will make the next few days a series of this topic, I just talked about.

I know Russians and you don’t. I know what it is like to live there and you don’t. I guess that is why I get so upset when I see all the lies about Russia in the western press and in peoples comments all over the internet.

I am really not an expert on Russians, but compared to 99.9% of the ones who say they are and write trash articles in the western media, I am, thus I am; an expert on Russia…

Posted by Kyle Keeton
Windows to Russia…

A survivor of six heart attacks and a brain tumor, a grumpy bear of a man, whom has declared Russia as his new and wonderful home. His wife is a true Russian Sweet Pea of a girl and she puts up with this bear of a guy and keeps him in line. Thank God for my Sweet Pea and Russia.