Belarus - the Ukrainian notes ofHaving lived the last three years in Belarus, and having learned it somewhat, so to speak, from within, from below, from simple residents of villages and villages with whom I was on familiar, to top, to city high-ranking officials, directors and chiefs with whom I was also familiar closely - within two months I was unsuccessfully tried to be made one of them - I seem to me began to understand mentality, quintessence of Belarusians.
Being roots from Ukraine, culture and Russian, and having lived the most part of life in almost never the Russian enclaves of Central Asia diluted by local population, on a warehouse of thoughts much “Soviet“ and a little “western“, I, to the surprise, from outside, partly as ““ and partly as “not“, distinctly feel a difference between once fraternal peoples. A difference in culture, language, mentality.
For example, crossing once again Ukraine - the Belarusian border in the remote place, I do not cease to marvel to sharp transition from impetuous, is drunk - cheerful bacchanalia a la “shche not a vmerla Ukraine“ the Ukrainian spirit to frostily - to careful akkuratistsky character of Belarusians.
That is, traveling around Ukraine, I constantly meet cheerful, garrulous maloross which, as hares with the Enerdzhayzer battery, constantly are in the movement.
At the beginning they minutes on twenty with the bales and yagodno - mushroom boxes, with noise and din, without paying to anybody attention as if they one in the Universe, ustaivatsya on “the El Misti“. Then - it is unimportant that they as from the house - get hour from the feed bags and bags “a kovbaska ringlet, the shmatochok of a salets, a yaechka, a pomidorka, hlib“ and, of course, “a gorilka plyashka“, and invite you to a table. To refuse it is useless, interests nobody that you have a stomach ulcer and you year as you do not drink or in a hand you sewed up an antialcoholic ampoule - it is necessary to drink.
All this “the easy lunch“ occurs in habitual rough process of “znayomstvo“. At what everything that will climb up mind is asked: how many times you were married how many currencies you carry with yourself how to take smuggling through border and so forth.
Those who sit near them are surely involved in conversation, because of natural impulsiveness of national character, sitting next, and also, perhaps, and those who just followed by beer and heard your conversation. Curiosity - national Ukrainian line from which they only benefit and you suffer.
Your conversation can be interrupted only for two reasons: if you, at last, arrived to the destination or the structure stops at the next station, on some “Vishnevka“ or “Red beetroots“.
Then all car in spite of the fact that stop time only 2 minutes, amicably pour out on the platform and rushes behind beer, ice cream, crossword puzzles. So proceeds all road. Ukrainians, unlike Belarusians who can sit for hours, without moving very restless people any face muscle - probably, such Nordic coolness is connected with centuries of government of Balts here - Lithuanians.
And it is unimportant that hour early - only seven mornings. The traveler maloross suffers from thirst and malnutrition, despite of time of day eternally. At what from all drinks he prefers “ïûâî“. Though, it is rather racial, Slavic attachment to this drink, than purely Ukrainian.
In process of decrease of day and to approach to night time of day activity of the Ukrainian hares with the Enerdzhayzer battery does not find room at all. By the evening the majority of them already fairly under hmelky, the dream suddenly overtakes some already by the time of a broadcast “On dobranich,“ and they fill up dit, “a yak of a dita“ where it is necessary. The same who courageously keeps the watch up to the end loaf on cars, come to see new acquaintances, and with those with whom did not manage to get acquainted yet, offer and for it, naturally, to “dzyabnut“.
The traveling youth, various pupils of culinary technical schools and agricultural lyceums, students of capital HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS, just school students, always shumna, are sociable and extremely friendly. They all road play cards, sing the Russian pop-music and tell obscene jokes, drink national pyvo drink, edeit ice cream and chips, leave near themselves mountains of pieces of paper then, having suddenly arrived, all crowd joyfully fall out of the car, both the rumble of their voices and explosions of a laughter are already heard on that side, on the platform.
But the most noisy and talkative lyud are ubiquitous and everywhere the scurrying-about dealers - pedlars. If you got in yagodno - a mushroom season, do not wait for comfort and tranquility. To your lawful place to you will not allow to pass, in the car not to enter, not to leave.
The “Rural shanks“ bent under up to the top the boxes filled with berry or
mushrooms - in each hand on a feed bag, tipsy “cholovik from vusa“ with the same feed bags and sacks, restless “girls“ and gloomy “boys“ - all go to the capital or some regional center, or just where - nibud go to sell the bilberry, cowberry, chanterelles, white, and also toilet paper, towels, milk, some bolts and nuts - well all trade in everything. And you do not have the place among this ill-matched crowd.
you Can refined and it is polite to ask you to let out from the car, you can shout not by the voice - all the same nobody will hear you. Will help only progressively - the offensive movements with use of easy physical force.
At the time of crossing Ukrainian - the Belarusian border, after superficial Ukrainian customs inspection the long exhausting procedure of examination by the Belarusian side follows. At once the Belarusian uniform severity and cloudiness is evident though everything occurs quite politely.
After passing of all customs formalities you, at last, sit down already on the Belarusian electric train. After such, apparently, natural Ukrainian slovenliness and untidiness, your eye is caught by not defiant Belarusian accuracy: in modest still the Soviet manner cars it is pure, windows are closed and open, toilets work.
Passengers, also, as if not from the brotherly country with similar language, customs and customs, and from where - nibud from - at the other end of the world: talk in a low voice, are not pushed, behave grandly. Nobody leaves behind pieces of paper from ice cream, empty beer bottles, a peel from sunflower seeds.
Nobody bawls cheerful songs, nobody hurries to get acquainted with the fellow travelers, nobody “dzyabat“ for new acquaintances. Throughout mine 12 - hour travel I met only one company from five people who drank vodka, played cards, left to the platform to understand, and then, having reconciled, again came back to the places and those, at the end, were the Ukrainians going to someone on a visit.
The first time, having got acquainted with this difference in national characters of two people, I was pleasantly surprised: who does not want to travel in purity, to communicate grandly with polite and well-mannered fellow travelers, not to be pushed on platforms and in turns.
However, moving thus repeatedly, and having got acquainted is closer to mentality of the fraternal Belarusian people, these than “Slavic Germans“ - judging by their cleanliness, hunting before work and some stiffness, it became extremely boring for me.
Well, present for a minute all this reserved tranquility, this careful politeness, this alerted dispassionateness from each other. Nobody bawls songs, having embraced for shoulders. Nobody in the neighbourhood jumps up at game in the card, indignantly crying out “not zheld - it is changed!“. Nobody shouts on other end of the Pyvo, Morozivo, Chips! car. Any to you chaotic Brownian motion, circulation - fermentation of bodies and minds, to and fro, here - there and again to and fro. In a word, boringly.
In Ukraine now freedom. Freedom of opinions, debate, words, put. I say that I think. I think that I want. I do that I want. And anybody to me not the decree. There are no more misters over me. I am own master. I am responsible for the life.
At the beginning this freedom intoxicates, dements. Then sets thinking, and after even to be terrified that from now on you “to itself the sir“ and nobody about you it is wise “does not podbat“. You want - become the capitalist. You want - the alcoholic (the last much easier).
I am remembered, having returned to the native places, to all these poplars and birches, straw stacks and sandy paths, absolutely was stunned by happiness which gushed over me and memoirs. Present to
, in the blue sky the last gold beams of the setting sun thaw. Warm wind - the mischievous person irons me on the person, rumples my hair, will escape away, will return suddenly. The birch, the gentle girlfriend of my childhood, languidly rustles with the sad leaflets as if klicht “Come, come, dear friend! I so long waited for you“. And so to me became well, so rang out - unfortunate mine started singing heart, poor my head so began to spin that I did not keep standing and it was extended in all growth in a dense green grass under the birch.
I lie, having become stupid, I look in the blue sky, I listen as leaflets of a berezkina rustle on wind. The grasshopper in a grass chirrs. By the uncle with braids went, women with any ogorodny tool. Eh, so well, as it is not a pity to die!
And, above all, nobody was surprised why it I there, in a grass as he the last pack, roll. Did not think that the good fellow got drunk and his mogutny legs gave away. And if thought, then very quietly so, without twisting a finger at a temple.
Be I on the new homeland, in Belarus, I would be brought quickly round - and it is not important in lirichesko - poetic mood I stay or in festively - hungover. Would fine in no time as pretty. I know. Even in the own yard I cannot roll about in a grass: to neighbors at once suspiciously becomes.
By the way suspiciousness and vigilance are two feelings which unite all Belarusians. All are watchfully careful. Carefully alerted. What to say what to do. Think one, tell another, do the third. As the party orders. Well, not party, so state, management.
Officially all are free. Say that you want. Think that you want. Do that you want. In practice the freedoms can use where - nibud at home. Or in a bath. Or on a kitchen garden. Quietly. About.
Officially - all for. Informally - against. On boondocks, in the offices, in the kitchens - all argue, criticize, are indignant. Against the president, policy of the state, local authorities, chiefs - petty tyrants. At meetings, meetings, in newspapers and on television - all agree, approve, admire. And all got used. And all keep mum. Here such prostitution of mind and spirit.
All are afraid of something. Well, maybe, are not afraid - are afraid. Are afraid to be noticed. Are afraid to be dismissed. Are afraid to be fined. Are afraid to be put.
the Belarusian men are strange shy. They always agree with the administration, the authorities. They are canny. They do not speak “no“. In Belarus in general nobody speaks “no“ if the president told “yes“ and vice versa.
I remember how at the Minsk station after midnight the local militia did not allow to sleep that who waited for the train. Who went in two nights, who at five in the morning. One zakemarit, other head on a breast began to nod. The team “Is distributed not to sleep! Not to sleep!“. And why it is asked “Not to sleep?“. Whether such care that not to oversleep the train whether that things did not filch though it is improbable. In Belarus practically do not steal. Officially. Pleasantly. But me this dog Not Sleep team something not on an interior had. I would prefer freedom to fall asleep and oversleep the train, than to feel how someone even in a dream controls me.
Having bought a beer bottle, I am every time when next “policeman“ by shpatsirovat, terribly looking on the parties, had easy unclear sense of guilt - as if I already broke something or here - here I will break though I did not know as as. Perhaps it is impossible to drink beer, sitting on a bench? Perhaps it is impossible to drink it from a throat? Perhaps I sit not there and not so? Maybe beer left at all not to drink the new resolution of the wise country leaders? And I, present, I drink! Criminal!
In general in Belarus it is necessary to do everything as others. As they say “Having appeared in Rome, arrive as Romans arrive“. It is no more and not less. As it seemed to me, the pluralism of opinions, povedeniye, reasonings, beliefs is not welcomed. Though there are certain freedoms. For example, freedom in youth fashion: if you want, then be “emo“, you want “Ghat“, you want hippopotamus. But all this under frostily - careful views of simple Belarusians and the patrolling police squads. As they say “ Ordnung ueber alles “.
Having worked once in youth with representatives more than thirty nationalities from all continents in several multinational companies, I managed to absorb hasty in myself that in the West already long time is called by “diversity“ - whether it be “ national diversity “ or “ cultural diversity “ all this “multi - stumps“ spirit: chaos of languages, accents, clothes styles, religions. And therefore by inexperience preaching idea of various points of zreniye and approaches to something, I at the beginning could not understand that horror which was displayed in the opinion of my new colleagues when I began to argue about world “liberte, egalite, fraternite “. I then did not know that in Belarus only one point of view, only one approach, only one line of conduct officially can be accepted.
Together with close trend of the western values, at all aspiration to openness, at all technical advancement of Belarusians - broad Internet access, a wide circulation of mobile communication, at all that order on old streets (here I not about Minsk), low crime (so speak on the TV), I continue to be surprised to their medieval backwardness in minds, servility before the factory syuzerena and princelings, general downtroddenness.
The main thing governed if you want to live and be well in Belarus - do not lean out. With good, especially, with what here is not welcomed. Having got a job, you quickly will understand, “as it is necessary to think“ as how to speak.
Here, as well as in Soviet period, the spirit of a collectivism is strong. Meetings, demonstrations, sports contests, Olympic Games. On May 1, you will be forced to spend Day of a flag and the City Day joyfully at a monument to Lenin, to wave amicably tags and to go a system.
I needs to do all this it is inspired, joyfully, without signs of grief and fatigue on a face. Otherwise your “discontent“ about themselves will be noted, and your “irresponsibility“ imperceptibly tracked.
Once, having been satiated in a year with all these a little distinct concourses - they are always carried out on command of the administration, but not on a need of the heart - I, in a fit of temper, and standing with a flag in hands, had imprudence to blurt out something it seems “drove us here“. On what, on me attacked and loudspoken more conscious companions lectured, having publicly shamed. It seemed to me it has to is a shame to be it, but not me, not I, but they palter, go against the conscience. But to them, truly, as well as to ancient Greeks, the concept of conscience was visible not familiarly.
And in general, Belarus the remarkable country for those who are always law-abiding, want to work and do not call into question action of the management. For those for whom, as well as in Soviet period, solve as how to do that it is good to eat and that is bad. For those who are ready to live as that wise gudgeon, without leaning out. Eh, well!