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Plans for 2017

Hello my dear readers! Happy New Year from Moscow with all my Love!

I guess apologies are in order. I have not posted since May and you kept visiting the blog, waiting for new posts from me and sending me the nicest emails ever. I really feel like I owe you many new posts! Reading your emails is always the sweetest thing, I love receiving them and I love your thoughtful questions.

2016 was good for me, just very busy. Lot’s of travel, changing jobs, lots of sports. Still, not a valid excuse of course. I will make it up to you in 2017 for the radio silence in the last months. I haven’t actually wrote a letter to you since the start of my blog, here it is. A summary of what I think, feel and plan to do.

Thank You And Some Stats!

I want to say that writing this blog has been a very rewarding experience for me. In addition to the letters you send me via email and your comments, I look at Google Analytics on a regular basis and I am super happy to see readers in the countries I have lived in and also in the countries to which I have never been to. I try to imagine, who are my readers from far places, what their day-to-day life is like. I wish they also had a blog, which I could follow from my Moscow flat.

UnderstandRussia global footprint

Where UnderstandRussia readers live

I am stunned to see that people from 144 countries are following my blog! Please let me know where you are from in comments – I would love that!  Here is the map of UnderstandRussia blog audience. It is really global, a year ago it was only 86 countries. Top 3 countries are still US, UK and Russia, followed by Canada and India. We really need to work on the Central Africa, no readers in some of the countries there.

Plans for 2017

  • Booking the blog plans

I am in the process of booking the blog. It was the original idea – to write a book about day-to-day life in Russia. Even though I have 90% of text material and illustrations ready, it might take time. I am working on that task, please just bear with me. Book will have 12 chapters and no photos, just an art work in the beginning of each chapter. A talented artist is working on that task, I love to see her work.

  • Ongoing posts

Meanwhile, please continue sending me your questions about Russia. Your questions are a fuel of my blog, I do not create topics myself, I always work from your questions. Many of the questions you have asked did surprise me!

  • UnderstandRussia video blog or Instagram? Your opinion needed

I played with the idea of extending UnderstandRussia umbrella to the video blog. And even shot one video. But spent so much time on it and am not sure it is any entertaining (see for yourself below) The idea was to have “Moscow walks”, but video projects really take time…

 

I now think that launching UnderstandRussia Instagram would be better. It will not be populated with pics of Moscow Kremlin (maybe occasionally)), it will mostly be pics of day-to-day life here. Please share in comments, what you want to see. Pics of streets? Supermarkets? Flats? Fun time with my Russian friends? You say, I do)) I need your advice on that!

  • Music plans

I am planning to add a Deezer player with Songs About Russia and Russian Songs in the next week or so. I have already created a playlist, but before I publish it – let me know, which songs you think of, when you think about Russia. I will add them to the playlist))

  • Plans on working with other awesome blogs

For now the blog I love most is the CrazyRussianDad video blog

I like his sense of humour, candid, yet clean posts. He is a true Russian, even though he lives in the US))

  • Your input? 

In this post I already gave you a lot of ideas on how you could shape the future of UnderstandRussia, but I am also happy to hear new ideas. And, friends, please do not be shy! Instead of sending me dozens of emails, use comments, so that we could start a discussion here, ok?))

From Russia With Love!

Tanya

Leave a Reply

  • Luis - 10 months ago

    Kisses from Bolivia!!!

  • Anonymous - 10 months ago

    Hug from Singapore

  • Anonymous - 10 months ago

    Beautifully written and wonderful revelations

    Wellington NZ

  • Jorge - 10 months ago

    Nice post! Looking forward to pretty much everything… Greetings from Madrid, Spain!

  • Sam - 10 months ago

    I would LOVE to see an Instagram account! I am so happy that you are back!

  • Olga - 10 months ago

    Great to see you are back!! I have read almost all your posts in just a few weeks. You are doing a great job. I love it so much! It would be lovely to see you on Instragram with random pics of everyday life in Russia (and I mean..everything!)
    Many thanks for your time and effort.
    Kisses from Spain!!

  • Матвей - 10 months ago

    Cheers from Stockholm! Отличный блог! Хороший слог, понятное изложение. Таня, вы – молодец! Приятно читать такой материал :). Я сам русский, но живу в Стокгольме уже 5 лет. Довольно часто задают вопросы о России. Теперь я буду рекомендовать всем интересующимся ваш блог :)

  • Emma - 10 months ago

    *big wave* from North Devon, England

  • Nina - 10 months ago

    Hello from the Washington DC Metro area!

    I liked the video and the idea of Moscow walks. If it takes too much time to create though, you could start off making one every 3 months, for example, so you have more time to dedicate to your blog posts and your Instagram account, which I think is a great idea. I would love to see pictures of supermarkets, parks, day-to-day life, historical places, hidden gems, unique areas, etc.

  • Marsha - 8 months ago

    I only found and began reading your blog recently. I am really enjoying reading about your country and its people. I became interested in Russia after I inadvertently saw a YouTube video of Russian, winter, car accidents and was totally amazed by several things I observed. First, I assumed that the government must require all autos to have cameras installed in them. I read that this settled many problems between victims and the police. Clever idea. I was so very surprised to find how fast Russians drove on icy roads! I know you change to winter tires, but some of those speeds make for deadly accidents. Overall, it appeared that safe driving was not at the top of the list. I think I might be fearful to drive in Russia, especially at night. I read that there were not as many police working at night. Is that true? Another thing I observed in the video was that the women may be scared or alarmed by a wreck, but the men were either very low keyed, or cursing up a storm. I learned my first Russian curse words from the videos. lol Everyone wanted to blame the other fellow. Good thing for those cameras. The most intriguing thing that really got me interested in Russia was the miles and miles of snow covered and desolate roads, with no homes, businesses, farms, or anything…just vast expanses of snow covered land. So, I started researching the transportation and roadway systems of Russia. I understand Russia is a huge land mass, but was surprised that there are so few roads to connect the different areas. One article I read said that if you were traveling a far distance, that is wasn’t at all uncommon for people to have to take their own food for the journey, as there were no restaurants along many of the long stretches of roads, and one should be prepared camp out if traveling overnight. I would love for you to describe what it would be like to take a long car trip in Russia, and what one should be prepared for, on such a trip. I know this is a very long post, but I have become so very interested in all aspects of your country, and you write so wonderfully about it. I look forward to exploring and reading more of your blog entries.

  • Marsha - 8 months ago

    I forgot to tell you that I loved the video you made of “Moscow Walks”. I’m sure it was time consuming, bit it was wonderful to actually see these things. Thank you