September 01, 2020

Setting the Table

Setting the Table

One Saturday night in the Russian city of N, a professor invited a group of people for dinner. Among the guests was a visiting foreign student. “Приходите пораньше” (Come a bit early), the hostess told her. “Поговорим до прихода гостей” (We’ll talk a bit before the other guests arrive).

But, like virtually every host or hostess on the planet, the professor was wildly over-optimistic in her planning. The foreigner arrived to find her still chopping vegetables and looking panicked. The foreigner smiled brightly. “Как помочь?” (How can I help?)

And out comes rapid-fire instructions in what seems to be a weird mixture of Russian and French.

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Tags: etiquette

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