Monday, December 14, 2009

Living the DC Way....Russian Style!

For the past 3 days (and for the next 1 and a half days), I've been entertaining for business a delegation of Russian child welfare officials from all over Russia and Siberia. They are in the States with a cultural/professional program and the organization I work for is hosting them - planning meetings, coordinating legislative conferences, and showing them the cultural side of DC....which to them (much to my delight!) means checking out as many shopping malls as possible! We had plans to tour the monuments at night on Sunday, but when the delegates saw it was rainy and cold outside, they decided they would rather shop.....and shop we did :)

Those who know me, know that I LOVE to shop. After diligent training from an early age by my mom, I can spot a sale item across the store, memorize a mall directory after only one trip, and navigate crowded parking garages like nothing. What can I say; I'm gifted. Anyways, for the past year or longer, I've been wanting a pair of "Wellies" - rain boots. But I've never found a pair that really called out to me...until now. I saw these plaid pink ones - only one pair left and it was my size!! - so I grabbed them and headed to the checkout counter. I was hoping to get the boots in a bag before the Russians saw so they wouldn't think I was a completely nutty American, but to my surprise, they all saw my boots and loved them! The youngest delegate (age 25) was like "You're Russian! That's such a Russian thing to buy!"

And so, I bonded with the Russian officials over a pair of pink, plaid Wellies. There's something to be said for cross-cultural shopping in promoting peace :)

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