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RWD Newsletter

The RWD Newsletter
September 2009

In this edition:


Site Stats

Cultural Exchange (Part 7)

3rd 'Annual' RWD Beauty Pageant

Upcoming Events


 School is back in session and another summer season is rapidly coming to a close. We hope you all enjoyed this past summer, and wish you the best in the upcoming Fall and Holiday seasons.

Be sure to check out the 'Name Days in the "Upcoming Events" section below.

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Cultural Exchange
Part 7

You Were Invited to be a Guest.

When you visit your friends, relatives, fiancée or business partner in Russia most likely you will be invited to come to their home. With this invitation there come expectations. What will the invitation be like? What do the hosts expect and what are your assumed obligations? Insights into this aspect of social interaction in Russia are what I wish to share with you today.

As you might imagine, one usually does not receive a written invitation unless it is a wedding or an important widely celebrated anniversary. It is quite common to invite guests during a casual encounter or with a simple phone call. Often one is not afforded much advanced warning, generally 2-3 days before the actual event. Don’t expect to be invited for lunch or dinner; you are invited to come as a guest. Sounds confusing? Let me help.

It is unusual for a Russian to invite somebody over for tea or coffee only. Even though Russians do not always specify what kind of meal will be served, most likely you will have a time specified for arrival, be it 6-7 p.m. or even 2-3 p.m.. Whatever the time, expect that the menu and courses for the meal will stay the same: a large variety of salads, meat cuts and mushrooms followed by the main course and, as always, tea afterwards.

Most will ask, “What could I bring along?” In response, one is likely to hear, “Nothing, just come yourself.” While this might seem quite a common conversation here in the USA, do not take this polite answer literally in Russia. It is our custom not to come empty-handed and common to bring flowers for the lady of the house, the hostess of the event. Make certain that the flowers have an odd number and of the fresh-cut variety (an even number of flowers or artificial flowers are only brought to a funeral). Should a guest arrive without any flowers, expect to hear the usual excuses, including, “I did not have enough time” or “I was unable to find the ones you like.” While some behaviors differ, others are universal!

It is also common to bring something for the table to share, such as a cake, pastry or sweets for tea time, which always comes after the main meal. You would also be well served to bring along some alcohol for the host to stay in good graces! If you know what it is they drink at home, buy it. Otherwise wine always works. If you seek yet another option, try fresh fruit.

It is preferable to come on time. If there are many guests coming, and one is late, it’ll force others to wait and will put you in an uncomfortable position upon late arrival.

Whatever you decide to bring, just be friendly and genuine like you would be with guests in your own home and enjoy the Russian hospitality that is famous the world over. There is no restaurant, even the most luxurious, which can match a home cooked feast prepared with love and the camaraderie shared with family and friends.

Tamara von Schmidt-Pauli at RussianWomenDiscussion.comTamara von Schmidt-Pauli is a native of St. Petersburg Russia who has been visiting, and living in, the United States and Canada since 2002. She holds bachelors and masters degrees, with honors, covering teaching of language and translation and currently resides in the greater Minneapolis area. Tamara is affiliated with Prime Language Services (

3rd 'Annual' RWD Beauty Pageant

Running through September 20, 2009, RWD is our 3rd Beauty Pageant. These 14 lovely women are competing for your votes:
  • Anna Semenovich
  • Anne Vyalitsyna
  • Anya Monzikova
  • Dasha Astafieva
  • Elena Grinenko
  • Eleonora Masalab
  • Irina Sheik
  • Irina Zhuravskaya
  • Karina Smirnoff
  • Ksenia Sukhinova
  • Lyudmila Bikmullina
  • Mila Kunis
  • Vera Krasova
  • Victoria Zdrok
And here are a few sample photos of the contestants:

Be sure to visit and review all 14 lovely ladies - and CAST YOUR VOTE!

Upcoming Events:

The GoodWife Report
(on IMB Affiliate Program Performance)

International Relations recently completed the 3rd edition of The GoodWife Report addressing affiliate program performance of 27 International Marriage Brokers over the past 18 months. To access a copy of The GoodWife Report, send an email to:
Only Nice People Invited
Copyright 2009 © International Relations
A Foreign Affair Russian Women Revealed Cherry Blossoms

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