One thing that surprised me about Russia is the hangouts. Young people walk around the streets, enjoy nature, the scenery and talk, but back at home, my friends and I rarely did this. Yes, California has better weather, however, we don’t go on walks for fun. Instead, we sit around at a friend’s house, cook, eat, watch TV, play games and talk. It’s nice, warm and cozy. Or sometimes we go to a restaurant for dinner, walk about the mall, or hold short summer BBQ parties…but we’re usually inside. For this strange phenomenon, I have no explanation. Perhaps, I just made friends with people who weren’t so active.
Schools here seem to be one tall building rather than a campus with multiple two-storied complexes like from San Jose. I think that is due to the colder winters, students and teachers rather avoid the cold as much as possible. I remember that in Virginia, indoor halls were rather common too, while complexes were limited. The weather here has been rather nice, still nothing cold yet, but I imagine it will come within two months. And then, I will wonder how young people “hang out”. Ice rinks, theaters and malls?