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When Your Russian Wife Gets to America
You bring her home. When you pull into the driveway, you proudly open up the car door and invite her in to your house. You say to her, “Here you are, honey. Your new home.”
She cautiously walks in the house. She inhales shortly a couple of times. She wrinkles up her nose. The house has got a funny smell to her.
You don’t notice anything. But to her, it’s full of strange smells she can’t identify: It’s a combination of leftover fast food wrappers, old pizza boxes, dust, beer cans, and remnants from the chip and dip that you and your friends consumed while watching a football game.
You threw all those things away, but the odors are still there.
It doesn’t smell like her house at home. It doesn’t smell like a house with a woman living in it. It smells like testosterone.
She looks at the furniture. Maybe it’s new. If so, it’s probably something a guy would pick out, like heavy leather or dark colors. Certainly nothing she would pick out.
Maybe you were waiting for her to get here to buy new furniture. Maybe you are still using the furniture you picked up from your bachelor days, like the cement block and board bookshelf. Or the post divorce furniture from ‘Rent to Own.’
No matter what, she isn’t going to like the furniture. Because she didn’t pick it out.
My wife took one look at the seventy five year old house I bought for her and said, “It’s old.”
Old Versus New:
The house was in excellent condition and had a lot of nice appointments like glass door handles, high pitched, coved ceilings, picture rails, and built in glass cabinets. In her mind ‘old’ was synonymous with ‘bad.’
She liked the modern non-descript apartments her other Russian friends lived in because they were ‘new’ rather than our house with lots of character because it was ‘old.’
I spent all my money buying the house and bringing her to America. Houses in California are expensive.
I had no time to think about the twenty-four windows in the house without curtains. I was waiting for her to come before I bought new furniture.
She said, “I feel like a fish in a fishbowl without curtains. How can you live like this?”
I was starting to think about the seven hundred square foot, one bedroom apartment she lived in back in Belarus. There were two bedrooms in this house, an office, a large living room and dining room, a fireplace, and plenty of land.
In her mind, her apartment in Belarus was ‘better.’
Home Is Better:
The house I bought was previously owned by a widow who had passed away. She had smoked about four packs of cigarettes a day in the house for fifty years.
When they prepared the house for resale, they painted the old walls without taking the nicotine stains off the old paint first with TSP.
My wife took two sniffs when she walked in the house and turned her nose up.
I explained to my wife that I had purchased the house from a widow who had passed away, and that she smoked in the house for many years. My wife took another sniff and said she thought that they had left her in the house for a few months after she had died.
She said she thought the house was haunted. I knew Russians were superstitious, but I had no idea how superstitious .
For several nights, she ‘saw’ the old lady in her dreams. For months, she talked about the ‘ghosts’ in the house.
My advice is don’t give your Russian fiancé any ammunition to fuel her superstitions. Don’t mention anyone dying. Don’t tell her any war stories about the house, the car, the town, or the neighborhood. It’s like telling ghost stories to four year olds before they go to bed.
If I could change my story, I would tell her that “the house was previously owned by nuns who burned votive candles day and night while singing hymns and praying.” Of course, knowing her as I do, she would not believe me. She and her relatives can communicate with ‘the other side.’ She would ‘know’ the truth.
Finally, after a few years, the smells and the ghosts have gone away. There are new double pane windows and beautiful window treatments in the house. She has decorated the house to her liking. My wife finally likes ‘her’ house.
About the Author: John has been successfully married to a Belarussian wife for over five years. He has traveled extensively through Russia and other CIS countries. He will tell you why you should consider Russian women, how to meet them, how to bring your special woman home, and how to survive married life.