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We didn’t take much to Russia, just two backpacks and a duffel bag, so there wasn’t space to bring much back. In fact, on the return trip, we flew with only carry-on items. When TSA x-rayed the duffel bag, I … Read More

Google Translate fails

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Do you use Google Translate when learning Russian? I used to rely on Kenneth Katzner’s amazing red dictionary but now it’s usually faster to put the mysterious word or phrase into Google Translate. Although Google Translate is becoming more and … Read More

6 more really long Russian words

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I’ve been translating A TON of documents lately, which means lots of fascinating words. Last month I had a huge assignment that had all kinds of interesting stuff, like “after taking this medicine, работа кишечника будет полностью восстановлена” (bowel function … Read More

More Russian language in Portland

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If you haven’t already heard, Portland is full of the Russian language. There are citizenship classes taught in Russian, a Russian social services program, and at least a dozen Slavic churches. There are little Eastern European stores with names like … Read More

The stray cats of Anapa

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Perhaps you read about the stray cat in Vladivostok who broke into a deli and ate through $1,000 in seafood. Maybe you watched the video of the stray cats who follow monks around at a monastery in Moscow. There’s also the … Read More

Russian Words #3

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Welcome to the third edition of Russian Words! This is an occasional series that highlights interesting vocabulary in Russian. If you’re an intermediate student of Russian and hungry for new vocab (or you don’t speak the language but you have a … Read More

Autumn day in Moscow

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The Ukrainian language has an absolutely beautiful word for November: листопад. It’s literally лист (leaf) + пад (falling, from the verb падать). Листя падає, the leaves are falling. Isn’t that a perfect description of November? The months in Russian, like in English, don’t … Read More

Fall trip to Russia

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Last month my husband and I traveled to a place we’d never been together… Russia! You guys, I have so many cool things to tell you about this trip, like the friendly cats that were everywhere, the BEST FOOD EVER, … Read More

Russian scavenger hunt!

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Today’s post is going to be a little bit different. This morning Elena N. and I had another skype call. It didn’t go so well. I had prepared this question… Какая разница между___? не куренная сигарета не докуренная сигарета не … Read More

Do you speak Yakut?

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(This video will instantly make your day 10000% better. I promise.) Дорообо! Don’t panic- it’s just the Yakut word for привет. 🙂 Here’s the good news: knowing Russian gives you a massive advantage with many other cool languages. You’ve got … Read More

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