December 2nd, 2014

Symbols of America


For the past few weeks, Ilya Varlamov has published posts incorporating photos from Moscow in the late 1980's - early 90's. I love these! Amazing to see how the country looked right before the collapse of the USSR. In today's post, I saw this photo from 1990. A massive queue to enter the first McDonald's in Moscow! I can't imagine such a scene, or how this fast food chain symbolized so much to people at that time. In 1990, I was 17. A senior in high school, getting ready to graduate and enter university, and closely following events overseas.

What other places, items and things did Soviet citizens associate with America before the collapse? My aunt visited Russia in the early 1980's, and she told me stories about locals asking her for bubble gum and wanting to buy her Levi's, straight off her body. This is no joke.

This is what makes Russia so fascinating to me - very rich and diverse history, constantly shifting and changing. Sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse. Not sure how most Russians feel about the current direction in which Russia is moving...I hope you feel for the better, because it's depressing and sad to live in a place where you feel absolutely no hope or prospect for the future. I have never once felt this way about my life in America...