I would advice you all to continue doing what I always do – and sort of have instructed you to also take pleasure in – look for signs of Russian literature EVERYWHERE! I found this bumper sticker on a car in downtown San Francisco today: “What would Taras Bulba do?” [«Что бы делал Тарас Бульба?»] Don’t recognize where it’s from? But of course you do! It’s the main character of the novel with the same name «Тарас Бульба» [“Taras Bulba”] by «Николай Васильевич Гоголь» [Nikolai Vasil’evich Gogol’].
«Всему есть предел» [there's a limit to everything], the Russians say. All good things come to an end, people speaking other languages claim. No matter what your native languages might have been, «дорогие читатели» [dear readers], it has been a pleasure for me to have been able to guide you through «сложности и весёлости русского языка» [the difficulties and the gaieties of Russian language] here on the Russian blog since November 2007. As many of you already know, in June this year I left Russia «после 6 (шести) лет» [after six years] of living, studying, working there. Perhaps not a few of you also are aware that currently «я проживаю в США (Соединённых штатах Америки)» [I am living in the USA] and «учусь в аспирантуре университета Беркли» [studying in graduate school at Berkeley]. Thus my reality has changed drastically in the past couple of months – not only have I met a new country, but an entire new world of responsibilities, opportunities and adventures has opened up before me. And no matter how much it makes me sad to say so, I realize that this is «перекрёсток» [the crossroads] of my personal road and the road of the Russian blog.
This is my last «пост» [post – even though some of the nit-pickier might say that this word in Russian should be used only for talking about different kinds of fasts, «великий пост» [lent], for example, and not be confused with texts submitted to blogs of various kinds]. But before I take my final bow, I really want to say «спасибо» [thank you] to all of you, the readers, «мои милые друзья» [my sweet friends], for the essential contribution you have made by way of your comments – as well as guest posts – to this blog. It is true that nothing written ever comes into existence before it is read; and thus only through you can I some day in a very distant future say that once upon a time, when I was a young girl and living in Russia, did I work as a professional blogger… I want to say «спасибо» [thank you] for every time anyone of you have corrected my spelling or my grammar – in Russian as well as in English (I wouldn’t be the kind of writer I am today if it wasn’t for such corrections!) – and for all the times we have connected on a deeper level through Russia as a country, Russia as culture, Russia as literature, and Russian language as a way of life. It is my innermost wish that you all continue «ваши усердные занятия русским языком» [your zealous studies of the Russian language], and that you learn also to treasure every little step forward.
«Ведь изучению языка нет предела!» [For the study of a language has no limit!]
My life, though located outside of Russia geographically, continues to move inside of Russia on several levels. I’ll continue to teach Russian here at the university; and master more and more while traveling along on the magical mystery tour known as a career «в науке» [in science/academia]… And one day – which now seems so distant and far – I will become that «профессор русской литературы» [professor of Russian literature] I dreamed of becoming when I was a teenager. And one day – who knows, right? – you might send your kids to college and as you do, urge them to take a class in Russian language or literature, and – once again, who knows? – I might turn out to be the one to teach them. I promise I’ll go easy on them and take it one «падеж» [case] at a time…
If there were more time, I would stay on and blog for infinity. They say that there’s always a «выбор» [choice], but in this case «мне и не придётся выбирать» [I don’t even have to choose], for «я уже выбрала» [I have already chosen].
Anyone happen to know if they sell bumper stickers with “What would Tatiana do?” [«Что бы делала Татьяна?»] anywhere? You know, the leading lady from the ‘novel in verse’ by «Александр Сергеевич Пушкин» [Alexandr Sergeevich Pushkin] «Евгений Онегин» [“Eugene Onegin”] is probably my favorite character in all of Russian literature. And to think that I spent almost three years blogging without even mentioning her! Russian literature is indeed an abyss… And with that disturbingly thrilling picture I leave you once and for all, repeating as I go «спасибо!» [thank you!] and «прощайте!» [farewell!]…