Who am I?………….

I’m a 54 year-old American named Mark, from New England. After the September 11th attacks on the United States, I did a little soul searching. I thought that that day about 3,000 people went to work with memories of the past weekend, and starting to formulate plans for the next. Among those were also quite a few I’m sure, that had dreams about what they would like to do when they retired. Of course none of their dreams or plans were realized. This made me reflect on how uncertain life can be and how sometimes it’s best to not put off plans.
At that time I had known Tanya, who is now my wife, for almost three years. We both felt that we would marry, but probably in the States and settle down there. I had already been to Russia several times. I had a really great job in the States and three grown sons, but I still made the decision to come to Russia, marry my wife and learn about the country and the people.
Having grown up during the Cold War, including working for a company involved in making fighter aircraft designed to counter the USSR, I had my own preconceived notions about Russia. But, I wanted to see things with my own eyes and not turn down an opportunity that might not have presented itself again. To most, the decision to leave sounded more like the product of a mid-life crisis, than a carefully thought out plan. I don’t really agree with that, although in terms of planning, after coming to the decision to come to Russia, there really wasn’t a lot.

The big move……………….

Just before Thanksgiving in 2001, I had made all of my arrangements, left instructions in the States as to financial matters and stored away the things I wanted to keep, but not bring with me. Figuring out what to bring was quite a chore by itself.
Having said my goodbyes to my friends and coworkers, I spent a week and a half traveling in three different states saying goodbye to my family members. The number of last minute details to take care of was huge, but I managed. The sense of looming adventure was thick and enticing, but the knowledge that I was leaving those I love behind and leaping into the unknown was also daunting. I mean, I was leaving all that I knew for the unknown and at that, an unemployed unknown.
My trip through three states took me to within a two and a half hour ride to JFK airport in New York. When I arrived at the airport, I saw just how much the world had changed post 9-11. The lines waiting to pass through security in order to enter the airport were nearly 100 yards long outside the doors of the airport.

2 thoughts on “About

  1. I’m 16 and hope to live in moscow one day my parents keep trying to scare me out of it for some weird reason they say it’s a horrible place because it is in russia and they say that everybody is trying to leave and that I should stay in america because everyone wants to live here They keep saying this to me….I love russian culter, music, food, architecture, fashion, drinks,people and, I also love the language I constantly research russian things I would like to if moving to moscow is possible I plane to go to collage to become a physical therapest during this time I hope to study abroad in moscow for a year to really get to know the place anyways could you tell me what Russia is like as well as Moscow or Saint Petersburg thank you

  2. Hi Bryce, well, until you are 18 you need to go by what your parents say, but after that you should follow this dream of yours, or forever regret the fact that you didn’t have the guts to do so and also wonder if your life would have been different if you had gone to live in Russia. I think that your parents may be going by a visual and mental image of Russia from the early 1990s. It’s not horrible and not everyone is trying to leave. They may believe that everyone wants to live in America, but in reality, this is mainly limited to uneducated poor hispanics from south of the border. America is quickly becoming a welfare state.

    I’m involved with different programs which send Russians to the US to study or work. Of the hundreds I send each year, I have about 2% who decide to stay there. The US over the past 20 year has been on a downhill slide in every way, especially the past 6 years.

    Without writing a book I can say that you would most likely enjoy your time in Moscow and it would always hold a special place in your heart. You would meet people that you would always remember. The more Russian language you know, the better time you’ll have here.

    There are certainly negatives concerning life here, as there are anywhere, but there are also a lot of pluses.

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