|Yep, this one's important- the restroom!|
*erm, make that 12-ish words
#1. ручная стирка / автомат
While washing machines are common in Ukraine, there is still a chance you'll end up doing laundry by hand. Be careful to select exactly what you need when buying laundry detergent; ручная стирка = hand wash, автомат = machine wash.
Now, as for figuring out all the washing machine settings in Russian, that's another story :p
#2. к себе / от себя
Don't want to look like an idiot? Better memorize these words fast!
К себе = pull (literally: toward you). От себя = push (literally: from you).
#3. БМВThat's not a typo, that's what the BMW is called in Russian. If you say BMW instead of бмв, many people will scratch their heads and get confused.
And if you'll be anywhere near a BMW, you'll probably need to hit up a банкомат (ATM) at some point. ATMs are commonplace in large cities like Kharkov and Kiev.
#5. слабогазированная / сильногазированная / негазированная
Yikes, I know, they're awfully long words! But unless you want to drink only beer or vodka in Ukraine, you should learn these three adjectives. You'll hear them in restaurants and stores whenever you ask for water.
слабогазированная вода = lightly carbonated water
сильногазированная вода = strongly carbonated water
негазированная вода = non-carbonated water
If these tongue twisters are too much for you, fear not, for there is a shortcut! You can probably get away with just memorizing газ (carbonated) and не газ (non-carbonated)... or at least it works in Coffee Life!
And as you may have heard before, the concept of water is different here compared to how we view drinking water in the US. In America, I turn on the faucet and out comes decent drinking water. I go to a restaurant and the waiter immediately brings a complimentary glass of water (and refills it throughout the meal). In Ukraine you must order drinking water, even at home. Water trucks make daily rounds throughout the city, honking as they pull up in your neighborhood. Residents immediately come outside and line up, empty bottles in hand. These roaming water trucks sell both carbonated and non-carbonated water. It costs around 4 uah to fill up a 7-liter water jug.
|Water truck on a very slow afternoon. Apologies for the low pic quality, but I was using a real camera instead of a cell phone and this lady would have freaked the freak out if she'd seen! You other bloggers with cameras know what I mean ; )|
#6. обмен валют
Обмен валют is the currency exchange. Unless you rely solely on the банкомат, you'll need to visit one of these eventually. I can't speak for other currencies like the euro, but the US dollar is only accepted for real estate transactions (paying rent, buying property), although some Ukrainian companies do pay their employees in dollars.
|If only all currency exchanges looked this cool! : )|
It's unlikely you'll visit one of these places during a trip to Ukraine (unless you have a Pushkin-esque love of gambling away your possessions), but you'll see the signs everywhere and it'll drive you crazy like it did to me- what is it?? Turns out, ломбард = pawn shop. They are heavily advertised in the metro and often found near the обмен валют.
#8. здесь или с собой? / доставка
More useful words for dining. When someone asks you if you'd like your food здесь или с собой?, they're asking if you'd like your food here or to-go.
здесь = for here
с собой = to-go
|"Delivery to all areas of Kharkov"|
#9. продажа / аренда
Like ломбард, these are words you'll see constantly. In fact, you can probably figure out their meaning on your own.
|продажа = for sale|
аренда = for rent
This one is for all the English teachers out there. Maybe you work at a fancy school and you can just stroll right in and xerox away to your heart's content, or maybe you're like me and you prowl the city frantically looking for an open ксерокс shop 15 minutes before class is supposed to start.
|ксерокс = xerox|
Home and building ремонт are an inescapable part of Ukrainian life. For example, take the last 5 days of my life.
Exhibit A: On Sunday I promised my colleagues a delicious meal at the Chinese restaurant. I'd been talking it up for ages: the food's so good! it's so worth the price! the waitresses are so nice! We get there and oops! All the lights are off and there's a hastily-scrawled note taped to the door: ремонт.
Exhibit B: At Scrabble this week Maxim pulls out his cell phone and starts showing us pictures of the ремонт going on in his living room; it's been reduced to bricks and rubble for the moment. Meanwhile, our next-door neighbors moved out and the apartment owner has decided to remodel; every morning around 7:30 AM the whirrrr! of the drill or the scrape! scrape! of wallpaper being removed awakens us.
Ремонт doesn't only mean remodelling; it's also used when talking about repairing things: shoes, cell phones, purses, umbrellas, computers. But don't just take my word for it-
|Can you find the ломбард sign?|
This word means 24/7, round-the-clock, open 24 hours a day... well, unless they're closed for ремонт or технологический перерыв (technological break), both of which happen on a fairly regular basis in Ukraine :p
Here's a круглосуточно обмен валют-
Alright, that's my list- what's yours? Please share in the comments below!
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