Don’t drink Vodka with Russians…

Don’t ever drink Vodka with the Russians.  Or, the Ukrainians either.  It’s like going jogging with a world-class marathon runner.  No matter how tough you think you are, you just can’t keep up.  It never turns out good and usually ends with a  blinding headache in the morning.  If you’re due for a long bus ride the next day, this is never good…

Earlier that evening, after touring the Kazan Kremlin, I was eating at a local restaurant, trying some of the local food and beer.

A birthday party group came and sat next to me.  They asked if they could use my “extra” chairs at my table.  I agreed and when they heard my accent, they asked where I was from.  After I told them, they invited me to join their party.  It turned out that three of the college aged students were studying English in the aim of someday becoming interpreters.  They were quite eager to have a native speaker to talk with.  As the night progressed, toast after toast was proposed and the champagne was followed by vodka and before I knew it, I was being dragged along to the local disco for some dancing.

As with all of the other disco clubs I have been to in Russia & Ukraine, I cannot quite describe the atmosphere.  I think that the closest thing to it in the United States is one of the clubs in Los Vegas or perhaps New York.  There is a lively atmosphere, a lot of dancing, and the action continues until sunrise.  I never make it past 2am as I just get too tired – LOL.  My new friends gave me a ride back to my hotel and I tried to get some sleep for my journey to the city of Yoshkar Ola in the Mari El province.

Early the next morning, I was reading the menu.  It describes the different kinds of coffee that are available.  Tell me you don’t see a little antagonism there…  LOL

The Cafe Americano  description reads, “For those who love especially weak coffee.”  Did the Russians just call us weak?  LOL  Sounds like a bit of latent Moscow/Washington DC rivalry.


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