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I closely study people at all times. Watching their faces, eyes and expressions. It's always a mental game, a type of creative intellectual stimulation to try to imagine their life story. How did they get to this place, has their life been privileged or difficult? Were they loved passionately or silently? The list of questions spinning in my mind is endless. I once wrote an entire post about this, showing random portraits of Americans from Tennessee and asking readers to weave their life tales in comments.

When I met this old woman walking in a Russian town, I didn't know whether to feel pity or admiration. It's difficult to imagine life in old age, no matter which country you call home. We never know what tragic or fortunate events await. Not in old age, nor day by day. I know only that in old age I'll be loved and taken care of. If not by a husband or lover, then by my immense family, which spans generations of all ages. Financially, I envision everything to be okay as well. I've saved in my own investments since I was 20 years old, so as to not rely only on a government pension in retirement.

How do you feel when you look at this woman? Do you envision a good life for yourself as a pensioner in Russia?

Comments

( 315 comments — Leave a comment )
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kovaliv
Oct. 11th, 2015 03:46 pm (UTC)
First!
peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 03:51 pm (UTC)
Bravo! No one is usually here on Sunday evening. :) Are you retired or still working?
(no subject) - kovaliv - Oct. 11th, 2015 03:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
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(no subject) - kovaliv - Oct. 11th, 2015 05:57 pm (UTC) - Expand
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aborigen72
Oct. 11th, 2015 03:51 pm (UTC)
лучше умереть молодым ,чем увидеть себя слабым .
peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 03:57 pm (UTC)
Yes, it's sad to be alone, feeble and very ill in old age.
(no subject) - serjiojitser - Oct. 11th, 2015 03:58 pm (UTC) - Expand
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(no subject) - a_nimaida - Oct. 11th, 2015 04:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
little_bes
Oct. 11th, 2015 03:55 pm (UTC)
my mother after retirement has traveled almost the whole of Europe. now going to Greece, Bulgaria and Romania and then down to Asia. so pensioners are different
peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 03:56 pm (UTC)
Great! I hope the same for me in retirement. :)
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serjiojitser
Oct. 11th, 2015 03:57 pm (UTC)
Это будущее россиян
Их пенсии уже разворованы царским режимом, а дети которые будут о них заботится не у всех. Поэтому многие россияне будут влачить нищенское существование после 65-70. Это если не умрут от болезней, т.к. медицина тоже "в прогаре".
peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:03 pm (UTC)
Re: Это будущее россиян
I think it's different in the U.S. A lot of people invest in their own 401k's and other retirement plans. We're not so conditioned to rely on the government for everything.
Re: Это будущее россиян - megawiz - Oct. 11th, 2015 05:15 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Это будущее россиян - g_kar - Oct. 12th, 2015 01:20 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Это будущее россиян - serjiojitser - Oct. 12th, 2015 03:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
andrey_kaminsky
Oct. 11th, 2015 03:58 pm (UTC)
Мать Сыра Земля :) Достойная тема
There is only way to deal with this - don't think about this.
peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 03:59 pm (UTC)
Re: Мать Сыра Земля :) Достойная тема
It's foolish not to think about this. This fate - old age - sadly awaits us all. And it's knocking on my door. :)
notabler
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:05 pm (UTC)
I am retired with a Lithuanian pension, ridiculous pension based mainly on my Soviet wages So I live just because my husband supports me, then I will die too ))).
peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:07 pm (UTC)
It's interesting - you can still collect a pension from Lithuania even though you don't live there? Two incomes is definitely better than one!! :) But I've always supported myself. Did you ever obtain British citizenship?
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bloger_d
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:08 pm (UTC)
I feel she is a GKM and she's got a kvartira or three.

While her children have not.

Edited at 2015-10-11 04:08 pm (UTC)
peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:21 pm (UTC)
What is kvartira?
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iiiko
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:14 pm (UTC)
Вот такие у нас старухи!
peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:16 pm (UTC)
I see them everywhere! Not only in provincial towns, but also walking with canes in snowy Moscow.
(no subject) - iiiko - Oct. 11th, 2015 04:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
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kovaliv
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:37 pm (UTC)
Pensioner cut off electricity for the debt of = 3 $. She froze.

peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:50 pm (UTC)
In what city is this?
(no subject) - kovaliv - Oct. 11th, 2015 05:15 pm (UTC) - Expand
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peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:49 pm (UTC)
Do you think pensioners live better in Ukraine? Just curious.
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aavenger
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:43 pm (UTC)
There is a good saying: "Smile today, as tomorrow will be worse. In either way." :)))
peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:50 pm (UTC)
Well, many Russians are fatalists. So this expression seems appropriate.
(no subject) - aavenger - Oct. 11th, 2015 04:52 pm (UTC) - Expand
a_nimaida
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:43 pm (UTC)
pension is small in many countries ...
Japan, for example, no pension

Retire to earn in his youth, we called it "the funded part of"
I am glad that now molodesh more responsible attitude towards the future.

In Russia, the retirement age is the lowest (55-60)
In European countries, the United States, in Canada is much higher
http://echo.msk.ru/blog/echomsk/1068988-echo/
peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:47 pm (UTC)
In the U.S, people plan for the future themselves, and many invest privately. They don't just rely on the government to support them in old age. Thus, it's easier to live better in old age. Yes, it's great that the retirement age is younger in Russia. But life is much harder there, so everything equals out in the end. It's outrageous that the U.S. is considering raising the official retirement age to 69 - this is too old!! I will hopefully retire by age 60.
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kovaliv
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:57 pm (UTC)
Я прошу помощь зала!

Что там Шеннон у меня спросила выше,не очень понятен смысл?

А то ляпну какую то херню :)
cossache
Oct. 11th, 2015 05:03 pm (UTC)
Там где про картинку что ли?))))
(no subject) - kovaliv - Oct. 11th, 2015 05:11 pm (UTC) - Expand
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cossache
Oct. 11th, 2015 04:59 pm (UTC)
I've no idea what my life will look after retirement. Things changes so fast here. I have little savings, but i spend them on traveling. So i'm trying to not think about life after 60.
a_nimaida
Oct. 11th, 2015 05:13 pm (UTC)
Советским пенсионерам не повезло да
Но молодежь может откладывать в накопительную часть пенсии
Шеннон же тоже пишет, что люди там не надеется на государство и сами откладывает накопительную часть

если вы молоды , так что все в ваших руках
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juan_gandhi
Oct. 11th, 2015 05:00 pm (UTC)
She's a human being like everyone else. I don't see why one should have all those strong feelings. Why pity? Why admiration? I can tell you why she's carrying a stick. It's very slippery on the roads; and if she falls and breaks a hip, life will be much harder for her.

It's just life. You may think people like her are very different from the people you encounter in your day-to-day life. Not much, actually.
peacetraveler22
Oct. 11th, 2015 05:31 pm (UTC)
I think she's very different actually. I don't see very many old people struggling on canes in the U.S., walking on icy sidewalks in freezing cold winter to simply take a bath. This woman was on her way to the banya. We spoke to her.
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