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7 Interesting Facts About Russians

Posted on April 21st, 2012

Facts about RussiansYou probably already know a few important basics about Russians: we eat borsch and wash it down with vodka.  Recently, I talked about 10 DOs and DON’Ts in Russia, today I’ll share 7 more interesting facts about Russians.

Russians Live Not Only in Russia…

Well, it is true. Russian ethnic group as of 2010 includes 142 million people, about 100 of which live in Russian Federation and the rest in Eastern and Western Europe and other parts of the planet.

Of course, most of the Russians – русские [ROOS-kee-ye] live in Russia, but some of us also live in neighboring countries such as Belarus, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Georgia and other republics of the former USSR.

The Largest Country in the World

That’s right, according to Encyclopaedia Britannica  with the area of 17,075,200 km2  Russia takes 11.5% of Earth territory and is the biggest country in the world.

Russians Are Hospitable

Yes, we are very hospitable – гостеприимные [gas-tye-pree-EEM-ni-ye] (singular: гостеприимный [gas-tye-pree-EEM-niy] ). Usually, we don’t wait for a special occasion to visit a close friend. We can visit our friend at any time with or without an invitation. We can stop by for a cup of tea or coffee for a few minutes, or come over for a lunch or dinner. If you are planning on visiting your Russian friend, let him know in advance about your plans, and don’t forget to bring a treat with you, such as a box of chocolates or cookies. Read about little gifts in more detail in my article 10 DOs and DON’Ts in Russia.

How Much Money Russians Make

As of 2010 an average salary – зарплата [zar-PLA-ta] in Russia is approximately $698, or 21,193 Russian roubles a month.

The Truth About Vodka

Yes, Russians love vodka! Usually male population prefers to drink it in shots, followed by small portions of закуска [za-KOOS-ka] appetizer, such as a pickle – солёный огурец [sa-LYO-niy a-goo-RYETS] or солёненький огурчик [sa-LYO-nyen’-keey a-GOOR-cheek] (diminutive form from “солёный огурец”) or селёдка [see-LYOT-ka] or селёдочка [see-LYO-dach-ka] herring.

When it comes to women, some of us would be brave enough to drink vodka in shots, while others mix it with coke or orange juice to make cocktail “Отвёртка” [at-VYORT-ka] “screwdriver”, or stay away from it altogether…

However, vodka is not the only alcoholic beverage that Russians like. We also like beer, wine and cocktails. The choice of a drink will depend on an occasion and a personal preference.

Russians and Emoticons

Yes, there is such thing as Russian emoticons – эмотиконы [e-ma-tee-KO-ni] (singular: эмотикон [e-ma-tee-KON]). If you see a bunch of brackets lined up in an email or SMS message this way – )))))), then you can be absolutely confident your friend’s keyboard is not playing up, and these are emoticons. Your friend is either smiling at you or flirting with you. )))

Cafeterias in Russia

Russians love going out to cafeterias - кафетерии [ka-fee-TE-ree-ee] (singular: кафетерий [ka-fee-TE-reey]). In most cafés in Russia you can enjoy more then just a cup of steaming Java. You will be offered a lunch and dinner as well as alcoholic beverages. Most cafes in Russia don’t close at 7pm like our local Starbucks. They are open late, often till 2am.

Do you have your own interesting facts about Russians? Have you visited Russia? Please leave your comments below, I’d love to hear from you!

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