Monday, February 1, 2010

25 Ways You Know You Have Been In Ukraine Too Long

1. You answer the phone with a deadpan “allo-a.”
2. When crossing the street, you sprint.
3. In winter, you choose your route by scanning for icicles.
4. You look at people’s shoes to determine where they are from.
5. Your day seems brighter after seeing some goon’s Mercedes broadsided by a pensioner’s “Moskvich”.
6. You are thrown off guard when the doorman at the nightclub is happy to see you.
7. Seeing a car cruise by on the sidewalk is no big deal.
8. Your not sure what to do you when the DAI only asks you to pay the official fine.
9. You give a 10% tip only if the waiter has been really exceptional.
10. You plan your vacation around those times of the year when the hot water is turned off.
11. You develop a liking for beets.
12. You know more than 20 women named Olga
13. You change into tapichki and wash your hands as soon as you walk into your apartment.
14. You start thinking of black bread as a good chaser for vodka.
15. You have to identify all the Tanya’s and Vladimir’s in your mobile phone by: Tanya, wife; Tanya daughter in law, Tanya neighbour, Tanya “Small”…
16. You wear a wool hat in the banya.
17. You are rude to people at the airport for no reason.
18. ‘Remont,’ ‘piva’ and ‘khorosho’ become integral parts of your vocabulary.
19. You are curious as to when they might start exporting Obalon beer to your home country.
20. Cigarette smoke becomes ‘tolerable’.
21. You don’t even notice padded doors anymore.
22. You never smile in public when you’re alone.
23. When you know the Kyiv Metro better than the transit system back home.
24. You catch yourself whistling indoors and feel guilty.
25. The elevator aroma seems reassuring somehow.

With thanks to my friend and colleague Angela Wojcichowsky of STEP.
By the way, Ukrainians do NOT think this is funny.


  1. Sounds a lot like Indiana. Twenty days and counting........argh

  2. All seem very logical to me. But what do I know?


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