1. Our multilingualism
If you visit Russia and notice that most of the wait staff in restaurants and cafés speak perfect English, it doesn’t mean that these spots are tourist traps. According to a survey organized by the Public Opinion Foundation, 56% of Russians know a foreign language moderately well, and every 20th person is fluent in a language other than their mother tongue. In our school system, students have to study one or two foreign languages and finish their studies with an advanced level.
2. Our education
After high school, teenagers don’t ask themselves if they’ll be going to university or not. Instead, they ask themselves where they will go for their post-secondary education. The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) found that 53% of Russians between the ages of 25 and 64 have a post-high school education, which is 20% higher than OECD average.
Yandex is the Russian version of Google. Of course, we also have Google and Yahoo, but Yandex is our favorite — it is the largest search engine in Russia with “65% market share in that country.” It is also the fastest-growing internet resource in the world. Yandex is not only available in Russia, it also exists in Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Turkey.
4. Our creativity
The first electric lamp bulb, the radio, the television, the airplane, the space rocket, color photography, the tram, and even synthetic soap — all these are inventions made by Russian scientists.
5. Our language
Russia is one of the largest countries in the world, yet we all speak the same language: Russian. There are no dialects in any of our ten time zones. We can communicate with anyone from Moscow to Vladivostok without any problem.
6. Keeping our traditions and rituals alive
Everyone in Russia, from a modest older woman to a young businesswoman, follows our old rules, traditions, and beliefs. We all knock on wood and spit over our shoulder to bring good luck; sit down in silence before going on a trip (for a better journey); choose another way after seeing a black cat crossing the road, etc.
7. We break records like no other nation.
- Russia is the biggest country in the world.
- Kliutchevskaya sopka is the highest alive volcano in Eurasia.
- We have the longest railroad in the world.
- Lake Baikal is the deepest and the oldest lake in the world.
- Saint-Petersburg is the northernmost city in the world with a population over 1 million.
- Oymyakon is the coldest inhabited place on Earth.
- A Russian was the first man in space.