7..9 May are the days of traditional meeting of veterans in Volgograd. Not only veterans of Stalingrad battle, but all veterans of the Great Patriotic War. You can see such groups in many places in the town. 60 years passed and few of them are alive today. Many of them are 80 and more years old. But after all those years Victory Day is the greatest holliday for them.
"Oh, the grand old Duke of York,
he had ten thousand men,
he marched them up to the top of the hill,
and he marched them down again. "
From top level of Inturist hotel parade looks sometimes like toy soldiers.
On a photo you can see some troops are in uniform of 1940-s.
9th of May is a special day for Vogrograd. Victory day is the most bright and lovely holliday here.
This time we were there on May 7th and have seen the "dress rehearsal" of the victory parage. It was great, though I was waked up with its sounds at 6:30 a.m. Parade was just infromt of hotels Inturist and Volgograd.
While drinking vodka...
If you wish to not wish to risk any unfortunate accidents while drinking vodka with you new Russian friends follow these few simple rules...(the same rules the Russians follow...)
1)Don't use beer as a chaser.....use juice or soda!
2)Eat bread or cheese or some food inbetween shots.
3)Drink the Vodka as shots, tipping it back and downing the shot (or a good portion thereof) Do not try to drink it from a tumbler, sip by sip, you will find that you don't have any drinking breaks this way and will end up sick.
Follow these simple rules and you should be OK.
When visiting Russia outside of the big cities bring some sort of hometown gifts for your hosts or work associates. They will likely give you a gift and it is nice to have something to be able to give back.