Originally Posted by IceCreamSoldier
conversational Russian is not that hard to pick up. I learned enough .... The alphabet has a letter for every sound, way better than English or French (where every word has a silent letter). Also, my experience was that trying the native tongue was viewed very positive and I have some great memories of fumbling around with words with policemen until I got it right.
I was sitting in railway station with GF in Mariupol Ukraine and a guy sitting on the next bench had a question about the train. He shoved a little pocket translator in my face and wanted to know about the train to Kyiv.
To my surprise, I was reading the Russian part of the screen and didn't even notice the english part above it (he was from Wyoming). Natch, this surprised the WY guy also!
My Russian is poor beginner, but I can get along, somewhat fumbling and slowly. At least I became the guide for the GF on the Kyiv Metro and knew how to get around the city. The train tickets was a real challenge to me though.
Learn some Russian, it is good for you!
GREAT REPORT FROM WALTER (and whole crew) AGAIN!