Author: James Taylor

My Summer Abroad in St. Petersburg

When I took off from Chicago at 6pm one evening at the beginning of summer, I was not entirely sure what I was in for. Flying across the globe on my own? I had never even left the country! While I wasn’t sure at that moment what my summer would entail, looking back, I can […]

Udelnaya Flea Market in St. Petersburg, Russia

Six blue line stops north of Nevsky Prospect  is one of the most enjoyable and authentic experiences that I have had in Russia. Rows and rows of stalls selling clothes, antiques, jewelry, tools and everything in between. Some sellers shout about what they’re selling, while others discuss prices and make sales with shoppers. This is […]

Kunstkamera in St. Petersburg, Russia

In Saint Petersburg you could go to a museum every day for 3 months and not visit them all. There are a few that are simply must-see — some for their magnificent art and architecture, others for their historical value, but there is one in particular that everyone should visit for its sheer uniqueness. Kunstkamera […]

The Bus System in St. Petersburg, Russia

“To get there, take Minibus 287 or Bus 186 and transfer to Bus 545.” As I heard this, I almost couldn’t believe it. Just how many buses were in this city? And how could it be possible to learn to use them in just a summer? My next thought was, why even learn? I can […]

Vaffel & Wine in Saint Petersburg

When I first walked by a heart-shaped waffle sign reading “Vaffel & Wine”, I thought that it seemed like an odd combination for a restaurant — and why was it spelled like that?  I did not end up visiting until a few weeks later when a few of us happened to be walking by and […]

Sand Sculptures at Peter Paul Fortress in St. Petersburg, Russia

Just outside the walls of the mighty Peter Paul Fortress, on a Neva River beach, is a different kind of architectural grandeur. The Sand Sculpture Festival (Фестиваль песчаных скульптур) takes places every summer here in central St. Petersburg.   Each year has a theme; this year (2018) the theme was “World Masterpieces,” and the festival […]

Museum of Soviet Arcade Machines in St. Petersburg, Russia

Maybe you’ve heard of Pacman, Donkey Kong, and Space Invaders, but what about Rally Авторалли-М), The Humpbacked Horse (Конек Горбунок), and Torpedo Attack (Торпед Атака)?  While Americans were shoving quarters into arcade machines to play game after game, those in the Soviet Union were dropping in 15 kopecks in just the same way. A few […]

Bushe, Cafe in St. Petersburg, Russia

On my first day in Saint Petersburg someone took me to a cafe. At that point, I didn’t know the name of the cafe, how I got there, or how to get back to the University — but the cafe was an inviting place. The decor was simple: wooden tables and chairs, plain white walls, […]

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