05 June, 2017
Greetings from Russia with, well, rain – and lots of it.
Hello everyone, I’m Kamila – Liden & Denz’s new blogger – I’ll be based in Moscow for the next six weeks, studying Russian and updating you about expat life in the city.
This is actually my second stint at Liden & Denz, I spent last summer in St. Petersburg and here I am again – back for the pelmeni, the painted churches and the pursuit of perfective verbs.
About the latter: I’ve been studying Russian for three years — which sounds like a long time, and certainly involved memorising a lot of case endings – and yet still, my spoken Russian mostly just receives blank looks, cocked heads, and a lot of inadvertent laughs. Waitresses here usually kindly suggest it will be “easier for us both” if we speak English. If you’ve ever studied Russian you’re probably familiar with the demoralising sensation of taking yet another step on the uphill treadmill of impossible grammar. But, of course, there’s also something undeniably fascinating about the beauty, the nuance, the sheer semantic complexity of this language.
It’s my dream to be able to hold a fluent conversation in Russian. In fact, as a PhD student specialising in Soviet history, its pretty much mandatory for my research prospects that I learn to do so. Mastering one of the world’s hardest languages – is my biggest passion and my biggest struggle – one which I will be sharing with you over the next month and half. As the idiom goes; без труда́ не вы́тащишь и ры́бку из пруда́ – for which you have a choice of two translations, the literal; ‘without hard work you won’t catch a fish from the pond’ or the pithier – ‘no pain, no gain’.
This post was brought to you by Kamila, currently studying Russian at Liden & Denz, Moscow.