How the Russian People see foreigners (some true stories having place at international projects at Sakhalin)

How the Russian People see foreigners (some true stories having place at international projects at Sakhalin)

Actually Russia is multicultural and multi-national country. We’ve got app 180 nationalities! And big (biggest?) part of them feel their identity with their nationality.

Once during our shift at one of sites we explained that our foreign colleague.

At site we had driver Fargat – nice guy. Always positive. No English. Only body and sign language used when talking to foreigners. And once we surprised our colleagues saying that Fargat is not Russian.

How come? – they asked.

It is impossible. You are kidding.

Is not he citizen??

No, no! it is OK, he’s citizen. But his nationality is Tatar.

By the way tatars is one of the biggest nationality in Russia.

That is how we are being seeing by foreigners. All of us are Russian. Only Russian)))


And how we see foreign people at Sakhalin is.. not that they are the same for us but closely to it. For example, at century’s beginning if you ask smbd where he works…

Then the true answer is “at foreign company / jointly company / RF contractor for oil project / etc” but answer you hear is “for Americans”.

In spite of fact that USA has only part in both projects (Sakhalin-1 and Sakhalin-2$ and after 2007 USA totally left Sakhalin-2 transferring “pipeline” to Gazprom) all foreign company for a lot of people were considered as “american’s”. No idea why.

By the way “american pipeline” as part of project was part of Shell anyway. It means Britain and Dutch.

But people still say the same:  now we work for Americans.


“Once I’ve met beautiful girl at shift. Kate. Kate from Alabama. She was supervisors but could do everything which her subordinates could. She could easily get sledgehammer and started do really man’s task.

She was a little bit round. Nice freckles.

Еще по теме статьи можно почитать:  Поронайск. Слушания - завод по производству метанола, завода по производству нефтепродуктов и морского порта с выносными причалом

And she was very very simple.

I would say artless (hope it does not hurt anybody – because “nobody get hurt”).

Once we had a conversation.

Hi, Kate. How are you?

Not really good. I am so angry. My subordinate could not do some task.


Yes, I asked him and he said he did not have enough qualification. Then I became ungry!

(and here I decided ask her smth; just for joke/fun)

Kate, can you show how you became ungry?

(do you think she was discouraged?? no)

Ok! You know, I can only describe.

My face became red! My eyes started bу bigger and bigger. I clenched my fists!!

Finally I hardly started stomp!!!

Terrible picture…


Now I think: yes, she is artless. But may be that time SHE was tricking me, not vice verce as I thought questioning so…

Kate Alabama)))


Philippines are very positive.

A lot of people noticed that.

Once I received answer I remember all my life. I asked what makes you be so open and positive?

Our life!

You wake up. You see sun. Or rain. Whatever you see. Is not it beautiful? You still alive and that is already enough reason to be happy))

By the way – about rain and weather condition.

Probably you know about climate at Philippine. Warm. Never snow.

And these nice guys when at Sakhalin at summer asked us give them winter PPE in  …June.

Yes. During night it was so cold for them that normal coverall (PPE)  was not enough.

And sometime in October they see ice covered puddle. Usual picture. It was raining, then temperature dropped lower than zero during night, and small puddles had had the ice on surface.

For them it was unusual! They knew of course what the ice is. And of course they had come across with for example artificial ice. But natural was kind of miracle!

Еще по теме статьи можно почитать:  Макаров, Сахалинская область. "Храм" или "Зона отдыха", январь 2014 г.

They started do (they were app 35-45 years old) what children usually do with ice on puddle.

Break it by foot)))

Take and try to see through  it like mirror.


Putting small ice-pieces by the collar (to each other).

How happy they were!

So if you unhappy then just find puddle in october’s morning…


Can we look alike for foreigners? Yes!

Honestly not often  but can))

Once nice girl arrived to our site. For 28 days (normal shift lenghth). She was African American. Tall and attractive.

You know first thing she demonstrated was disability to remember who is who in our room! We were only two. Me and field coordinator.

Coordinator was responsible for any convenients for guests. Living. Helping with trip organizing. Transport. Whatever people need the coordinator should provide or organize.

And all questions for coordinator were addressed to me.

Day by day. Every morning. Girl came and ask me a lot of things. And sometimes during the day as well.

She really could not recognize us? At least remember where is coordinator’s table?

I can’t explain it!!! Really!!! She graduated from university. I doubt that she could be send abroad (Russia especially) for supervisory practice if not having enough skills… She definitely got some success at that practice.

But she couldn’t distinguish us.

And only at final day before sitting at crew-bus for get to rail station and further on home…

Only at final day she came to us and confidently addressed to coordinator. Even called him by name.

And hug.