pocketnico saidConsider moving to Portugal or Spain :p
Russia is an interesting place to live. What I love about Russia is how cheap food is. I loved being able to live off $10 a week on groceries. However, other goods are definitely not so cheap even for the average American. Russian people are also very real and honest with you.
Unfortunately Russia is not a place to be gay...
Moving to Russia? Dude where's your head at?
It's starting to piss me off that the US and Canadian media (and governments, and people) pretend that Russia is some kind of normal country that can be regarded and treated as any other country. It's not.
Read and shiver http://larussophobe.wordpress.com/
Good and bad things happen everywhere. I really don't think Russia is as different as many people assume it is. I mean, at least it's not Afghanistan or North Korea, right?
I really had no problem living in Russia even as a foreigner. Perhaps I would think differently had I been born and raised there, especially since I was born in 1985 and would've had to spend my childhood during the hectic post-communist years.
It's one thing how the Russian government works compared to the US and Western Europe, but people really are not that different in most places you visit. They have different languages and cultures, but they tend to have the same goals and worries as everyone else.
Russia certainly has a long way to go to change things, and it's not going to happen over night. It's going to take the next couple of generations for Russia to dramatically change. As long as there are people who are alive and can remember the existence of the USSR, that mentality is going to continue to exist. So really, you kinda need the current generations to die off before any "real" change will happen.
Besides, what is "normal" anyway?
Fair enough that "normal" is a very arbitrary term.
However, I'm not sure when exactly you were in Russia, but that change you're talking about is certainly not going to happen as long as the Russian government is doing what it's doing. With an ex KGB agent as the defacto leader you can be sure the methods don't change.
As a foreigner I'm sure you were shielded off from the worst of the Russian regime, the worst you had to do was probably pay a couple bucks to the militsia every now and then.
I lived in Georgia for a few years, I've been through the war, saw some very unpleasant things, and been held at gunpoint by a bunch of malnourished drunk russian conscripts (they're only like 5'7" tall but fuck i crapped my pants).
In the Ukraine, Estonia, Armenia and Azerbaijan I ran into some more Russians, and none of the dealings were very pleasant (the worst was having a knife pulled on me on a Tallinn trolley bus). So I just don't like them very much in general.
About 4 months after the war a friend of mine visited me in Tbilisi, meeting up with his girlfriend who was a Russian from Moscow. She thought Georgia was a nation fo 50 million people and a huge army
... it actually has 4 million people. And she was an intelligent, educated, person. The Russian government is good at lies, damn lies, and evil lies. And the West is sugar coating the whole thing on a regular basis.
After all, we don't wanna give the Russians another reason to cut off the gas supply to Europe again
I vote let's nuke 'em