Back in the USSR: вспоминая советское детство (1)


Russian Blogosphere is replete with lists of things “children from USSR” remember. Over 300 individual memories connect the 1980s Olympics in Moscow, rare foreign travel, children’s games and Soviet reality. All of them are long gone. I decided to put up 15 most easy to explain and see  what picture of the USSR childhood it makes for you. Would you like to try any of those as a kid?

Авоська с мясом за форточкой? Помните: полез доставать – пельмени упали! – The fridge was too small to fit everything, and if it cold outside (famous Russian winter) the meat and other “fridge” products were put into the bag and hung outside, or just sat on the ledge of the window.

things hanging in the bag outside to keep them cool

Чудесный мамин развод: “Я тебе сейчас покупаю, но это тебе на день рождения”?! “Развод” here means a trick – parents may not always have money handy in time for your birthday, so they would buy you stuff you liked at the store as an early birthday present when they had money.

Волшебная бабушкина фраза на прощание: “Только банки верните!” Grandmother would make jam and other preserves and give it to the family. THe key is to return the jars to do the preserves for the next year.

А, кстати, что до сих пор лежит в холодильниках на дверце сбоку? Нет, не яйца. И не кетчуп. На дверце сбоку лежат…
лекарства! – Many people kept their medications in the fridge, for the lack of other places.

Бесплатная медицина – это тоже чудо. Врач один, а очереди две – одна по талонам, а вторая по записи. А еще и третья была – “Я только спрошу!” Officially “free” – the doctors would be payed for from the taxes out of one’s salary – medical visits were much craved for, as there were always too many people for one doctor – one line of people who signed up for the visit, others coming back with a special ticket the doctor gave them, and still other inquiring about the whereabouts of their medical charts and analysis data and discussing many other questions for hours.

Маленькое окошко из кухни в ванную – что там смотреть, объясните? Many Soviet apartments were provided with a view from the kitchen into the bathroom.

kitchen bathroom view

Писающий мальчик на двери туалета… just to make sure you are not mixing it with the bathroom in your own apartment you should have a sign

Телевизор “Рубин” – берешь пассатижи и тын-тын-тын! Three television channels with programs only in the morning and evening.


Молоко в треугольных пакетах! (now extinct)

Вы до сих пор с внутренним трепетом проходите мимо километровых рядов со спиртными напитками в супермаркете. (late 80s with their anti-alcohol campaign made lines for vodka very big; also, there was little variety among in alcohol drinks)

Вы помните, что РС/ХТ – это круто и очень дорого.

IBM PC/XT 1983

До сих пор вы вздрагиваете если кто-то рядом произнесет писклявым голосом: “В эфире – пионерская зорька!” – A morning program that was hated by the kids as the pioneers in it were too happy to go to school.

Говорит Москва

“Макдональдс” для вас – название шикарного ресторана. (People did not know what it was about)

Вы уверены, что лучшая группа Европы – это “АВВА”, а Америки – “ВоnеуМ”. (Boney M even had a concert in Moscow)

So, to be continued…


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