In Russia… with gloves.
A trip to Russia is not the easiest thing in the world to organise. You can decide to go whenever you like, but you still need to be officially invited. Two trips to the embassy in London should sort that out, but it all begins with having to queue and queue and then queue some more. Still, once you’ve been through all of that, you get to find out what your name looks like in Russian which is a novelty. Mapk Mah4ectep, in case you were wondering!
I don’t want to give a false impression of the country, because actually I had a really great time. The food was fine, the people cordial and even the transport system worked very well. You just need to be very good at remembering symbols! I can’t say I felt unsafe at any point either, but no-one seems to smile and I think that’s essentially what leaves you feeling the chill. I had a go at learning some Russian through Duolingo before I left and it just seems to be a language that barks, if that makes sense. Even asking for a coffee sounds accusatory! So maybe that’s it? Either way, I’d recommend a visit. The underground system is an instagrammer’s dream.