Dacha: a Break, a Weekend Getaway in a Very Russian Way

Summer will soon say goodbye to us in Moscow (at least, that is what I think), while the freezing-cold north wind is preparing itself to blow as strong as it can. I start to unpack my coat collections and boots. Hooray! Finally, the dog days of summer are over!This year was the hottest summer ever during my stay in Russia (I have been living here for about 6 years, more or less). The temperature went up to 34 degrees during the day, and it stayed almost the same even after the sunset, which is quite an anomaly. I could feel the heat burning my back while I…

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Talking About Tallinn (Old Town)

If you want to feel the romance of an old city, Tallinn is the right destination for you, although I fully understand that some of you may disagree with this, especially the big fans of Prague. As the majority of my acquaintances who have been to Prague always said that the capital of the Czech Republic is just incomparable if we are talking about a romantic old town destination. Sorry to say, I have never been to Prague and, due to its popularity, I don’t have any intention to visit it in the near future. Really, the more popular a destination is, the less interested I am…

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You have become a bit russian if you…

Ask “Who is last?” if you are in a disorganized queue. In some institutions, such as even the Federal Migration System in Russia (which I have visited), queue numbers don't ever exist. So, as soon as you enter the room, your eyes find lots of people desperately waiting for their turn. If you don’t see the machine for taking a number, surely the first thing you must do is ask, “Who is the last one?” (кто последний? Kto posledniy?) Only locals or people who have been in Russia too long have formed this habit. Take off your shoes when you enter your own home or someone else’s…

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Tersesat di Gerbong

Ini cerita paling tolol yang pernah saya miliki seumur hidup. Selama 25 tahun saya tinggal di Indonesia yang fasilitas keretanya baru-baru ini saja dimutakhirkan, belum pernah sekalipun saya tersesat, apalagi tersesatnya di dalam gerbong di satu kereta. Tetapi, lagi-lagi, ini, kan, Rusia, bukan Indonesia. Hal aneh macam apa pun bisa saja terjadi di sini. Saya yakin, penggemar video-video ajaib sedang mengamini perkataan saya barusan karena mayoritas video janggal tentang kecelakaan (ini miris) atau kelakuan super duper aneh biasanya berasal dari Rusia.  Jadi, saat itu saya berniat pergi ke rumah nenek suami saya yang terletak di sebuah kota nun jauh dari Moskow, kota Mozhaisk. Dari rumah saya, yang…

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You Need to Visit Luxembourg because….

To be frank, I didn’t even dare to imagine that I would ever step foot in this country. When I lived in Indonesia, whenever someone asked me the question, “Which country would you most like to visit if you could go to Europe?”, Luxembourg never crossed my mind. I would automatically say, “Spain, Italy, or Germany.” No, I don’t mean to offend the locals. Not at all. That was just because I had no idea how to get there and what to see there. Only later did I understand that it is one of the must-visit countries for me if someday I go to Europe. And it…

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