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post The Lost Generation 1

May 5th, 2008

Filed under: Immigration Stories — Ayele @ 00:26

Haven’t you yet met someone who gets never tired of narrating about his or her student years in the good old Soviet Union? Most of you must have met someone like that already…. or you are that someone. If you are none of the above, I am hereby going to feel that gap. We are spread out all over the world. Most of us didn’t go back to Ethiopia preferring to stay away in order to search for something we could still not describe. Though many of us might reach a certain goal in our life abroad, I choose to call us “The Lost Generation”. If you have already listened to those stories from ex Ethiopian students in USSR, the ingredients of their narration will definitely throw some light in to this terminology “Lost”. When we talk about our years in Russia, we usually talk about the great life we had there but never about what we have gained after our study and after we left. Unfortunately, most of us learned subjects that we couldn’t implement afterwards.

The lost Generation.

Moscow “The Arrival”

Two strange things hit my mind on my arrival in Moscow. The sun was not as warm as it should be and there was no spice in the food that I first tasted. Two missing essential aspects that could easily discourage a new-comer student from Ethiopia. Before leaving Ethiopia, I remember spending my hard earned money on a jacket in Merkato hoping it could keep me warm through the dreadful Russian winter. It was around the end of September and I knew, I should have invested that money on something else like on ten kilogram of Berbere.

Firstly, all of us new-comers from various countries were sent to a big camp in Moscow where I and most of my Ethiopian colleagues had our first experience of seeing so many young students of different origins. We must have been over thousand in this camp and our stay in there was professionally organized. Many Russian young girl and boy students were assigned to help us through different processes of a day. Specially the creation of various groups while the meal time was essential. A lot of chaos would have happened if this young Russians haven’t been around.

Before being sent two our designated universities and institutes through out the Soviet republics, we have stayed in this collective camp for about a week or two. The amazing atmosphere in this place was that everything there was too hype to believe. There have been music videos from the west running on various monitors that were placed in every dormitory. We rarely went out of the compound because it was so perfect for us in there. After getting to know the other students from countries like Cuba, Angola, Columbia, Afghanistan, etc., the camp was so cozy and full of positive reflection that most us started to see USSR in a quite different eye view. We were sure that it would be fantastic like that through out our stay in the country…

…. well, we were partially wrong.

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to be continued …

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