Polite remarks – Russian
Whether you are a fluent speaker or a have just begun learning Russian, don't underestimate the value of using polite language and gestures. A “thank you” said with a warm smile might just bridge that language barrier and perhaps make you new friends. This section introduces a list of basic polite expressions. Although they are not all-inclusive, these expressions will be appropriate in most situations.
Russian has formal and informal forms of address, with the former usually reserved for interactions with strangers and figures of authority and the latter for conversations among peers and immediate family. It is better to tread lightly and use formal forms of address with all figures of authority (police, doctors, immigration officers, and customs officials) as well as with people with whom you are newly acquainted.
Russian smiles and laughs easily when he feels relaxed - with close freinds, at home with his family. But there is not a common rule, a habit to smile politely to unknown person in the street or to a neighbor in your house. This rule of behavior did not become a standard form of politeness in modern Russia yet. Because of peculiarities of Russian culture, history, traditions formal smile to unknown person ( it's very important that's the person is unknown, alien) was not an obligatory element of Russian traditional communicative culture.
In Russia the tradition to feed the guests well has always been taken seriously. A lot of people lived rather poorly and weren't able to buy good food every day. It is the reason why a well laid table with plenty of delicious food to eat was the sign of hospitality, friendship and appreciation that the hosts showed to their guests. The time of hunger has long passed, but the tradition remains: the hosts - usually the woman, the lady of the house - tries to prepare as many tasty and different dishes as possible. The best wine and vodka is served - to demonstrate that the best is kept for the dear guests! It is not a coincident that the custom of presenting the dear guests with the loaf of bread and salt - "khleb-sol'" is still respected. Bread was the most important product for the centuries in Russia and salt was a rarity and used to be very expensive. This is the background of the Russian word "khlebosolniy", the synonym of "shedriy" - generous.
Please repeat - Paftarite pazhalusta
Speak slowly, please - Gavorite medlenneye pazhalusta
Good luck - Udachee
Sit down, please - Sadites pazhakusta
Condolences in your sorrow - Soboleznuyu vashemoo goryu
Can you help me, please? - Pomogite pazhalusta
May I use your telephone? - Mozhno pozvonit pa vashemu telefonu?
Sorry for being a burden - Izveeneete za to chto obremenyayu vas
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