I often talk about how fantastic life in Moscow is because it’s true. But it’s not all peaches and cream. We will leave the women, parties and excitement from the big city on the side. What does real life look like in Moscow?
The weather is miserable
I know this is a damn cliché but, unfortunately, it’s true.
Weather. armed. Sucks.
For six months in Moscow, it sucks In a bad way. It is gray, cold, there is almost no sunlight and you will get depressed. I am writing this in April and it is the first month since October that I remember having consecutive days of sunshine.
It is not even the cold that drains your energy but the lack of sunlight and the very short light time in winter. In my first year, me barely I noticed this because everything was new and exciting. The second year is already squeezing you out. Now, I’m at a point where I’m working overtime on building my business in such a way that I can run away for at least a few weeks next winter..
And no, do not come to me with vitamin D supplements and cold showers. Try to live a few years in endless greyness and then we can talk.
The people are miserable too
It is not surprising that the weather makes people very miserable.
Russians are not exactly a bunch of smileys. I can see now why that is.
Add to the depressing weather Moscow’s incessant madness:
- People are in a hurry all the time
- People come across you
- Everyone looks nervous
If I had to imagine the opposite of “relaxed”, I would imagine Moscow. Life here is much better than in the rest of Russia, but you can not know. No one is satisfied with what he has. People are always trying to move forward at all costs (even though it is a very safe city).
It very much says it Everyone adored the World Cup last year. Muscovites are not used to a carefree, happy, lively and let life approach. It felt like a breath of fresh air and a welcome break from the constant groove.
Russians like to find a damn goat
Their attitude and sincerity without a BS is refreshing and fits my personality well.
But one thing they definitely do not have is taking personal responsibility. In Russia, it’s always someone else’s fault.
- Can’t find a parking space and need to pay for a ticket now? I’m not to blame, The other cars had to park somewhere else.
- Can not pay rent? I’m not to blame, My employer does not pay on time.
- Is the boyfriend cheating on me? I’m not to blame, All men are dirty scammers.
- Not getting good grades? I’m not to blame, My professor is an unbearable cup.
- America imposes sanctions on us? It’s not our fault, We never did anything wrong.
You taped the idea. The Russians hardly think about what they could have done Differently To avoid getting into such an unfortunate situation. It’s always “but …”.
Precisely a Russian girl confirmed this suspicion that I had for a long time. She agreed to it The Russians have a “savior complex.” They are always waiting and hoping that a white knight will suddenly appear and save them. It also explains why Putin is so popular, why Russian women continue to get married despite the appallingly high divorce rates and many other things …
The Internet in Russia is not free
This is a minor point though sometimes The internet bothers me. Russia blocks a lot of sites like Telegram, gambling sites, porn sites and completely harmless sites that are ancillary damage.
Now, I do not gamble and beat porn online (more). But I would still like to have the opportunity to choose for myself what I want to see or not see. You can bypass most of these blockages with a simple browser plugin or VPN but some do not.
This is actually one of the few cases where you are reminded of it You do not live in a completely free country.
You still need Western communication
This is not annoying about Russia per se but an observation I made.
Even if you move to another country, you do not begin to fully assimilate into that country. The same thing did not happen to me when I lived in Ireland, England or the Czech Republic. I still kept reading newspapers from home and getting my information from sources I trusted.
In Russia, I have never read a newspaper And I have never seen a single broadcast of one of the infamous propaganda news programs. I am simply You do not care what happens and it does not affect me even in the slightest. This is not a bad thing, but it does mean you will never see the “other perspective” unless you make a conscious effort.
You’re never really connected to a culture
Again, this is not something that annoys me. But I noticed it It’s really hard to become part of the local culture, No matter where you live.
For example, I have Zero Russian friends.
I know this is not a good thing. I wish I had but again, it does not bother me enough to change it. Although I love Russians, the cultural difference is noticeable. Some of our perspectives in terms of Businesses and relationships are very different.
I never have really I tried to meet local friends even though I spoke fluent Russian, I knew all the local music, what’s cool right now and reference to culture. The same thing happened to me in other countries. It takes a lot more effort to contact locals than other foreigners. There is always an easy and invisible barrier, something that separates “between you”.
You compare “your way” to “the Russian way”
At the same time you always catch yourself thinking “Typical Russians.”
This goes into my previous point. The barrier continues to exist in your head because you will compare yourself and “your way” to “them” and their way all the time.
- See a construction site with five workers and only one actual worker? Usually Russian.
- Barista treats you like a piece of dirt? Usually Russian.
- A guy rolls into the club the most Ridiculously Tasteless Gucci shoes? Usually Russian.
You are not doing this with bad intentions. You do not even do it on purpose. But there is always a way of thinking of “we are such and they are such”. I think It has to do with your identity in a certain way. The funny thing is that if you stay abroad long enough, you start doing the same thing in your country. I caught myself thinking “it’s so German” more than once when I was home.
Tired of explaining yourself
Tired of explaining why the hell you are Moved to Moscow (Which is a correct question, actually).
A really A tiring and annoying aspect of living abroad is the question that is always repeated:
“So why did you decide to move to Moscow ??”
If I would get a dollar for every time I answered this question, I would already be making more money than on this site.
At some point, you get tired of having to explain yourself over and over again. The Russians are confused by the fact that a Western man is moving there. You even start asking yourself why you are actually there and do they have no point. For me, a quick glance at my Instagram silences all doubts about that I might there is…
You will have a hard time finding true friends
Finding friends abroad is not easy. First of all, The language barrier blocks you. Even if it’s not an issue like in my case, you have the cultural barrier. But suppose you can handle it even then there is still the obvious question:
Where do you even find friends?
It’s easy if you’re a student but only if you study with locals. I studied with other foreigners.
If you work in an organizational job, you will find colleagues but no Necessarily Friends. This is at least a start.
If you are a freelancer or entrepreneur, you will find at best business partners and contacts but not real friends.
So you basically have to get out there and Actively Start looking for friends (men). Easier said than done. Of course, there are always sports clubs, gyms or other types of communities but it will take time and serious effort.
Not complaining but only Statement of facts.
Traveling from Moscow is expensive
Especially in Moscow, you will have (roughly) a It’s hard to stay away. Okay, there’s a St. Petersburg but you can only go there so often. Flying to another place in Russia will bore you very quickly because all cities look the same and are boring (sorry, hard truth).
You can always Fly, fly Abroad but flights from Moscow are more expensive Than, say, London or Central Europe. Low cost companies only Fly, fly From home. In the summer, Was prepared Cough at least € 300 for a round trip ticket. There are cheap packages that you must have Was prepared Stay at a 2 * hotel somewhere in Turkey or in the Crimea.
Moscow is well connected, you only Pay a slight premium to get away from it all.
there you are. Moscow is not only cool and fun. It’s still a better city than London, but, as with everything in life, it’s not as black and white as you think.