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Russian emigrants

Alice in the Wonderful Garden

By Natalia Steward

Alice in the Wonderful Garden"How can I find my way to the wonderful garden ?"- Alice asked the Cheshire cat.( ( L. Carol. " Alice in Wonderland"). Three years have passed since I stepped on the British land with a suitcase in my arms. Is it a lot or a little? I don't know.

But this is what I realized since then; it doesn't matter in which country you live.

Happiness doesn't come from outside, it comes from inside. I heard this a lot from Russian people who live abroad, "Why I am here?" Why? Indeed.

Do you remember the fairytale Alice in Wonderland? I recently watched a movie based on this fairytale performed in English style, as the saying is. The girl Alice, was so embarrassed to sing a song in presence of her guests that she ran away and hid in the woods.. She falls asleep there and has a dream. Alice finds herself in an underground fairyland, where life has it's own rules. These rules are very strange and, at first, incomprehensible to her.

But, step by step, Alice starts to understand these rules and finally finds a passage to a wonderful garden that she saw from far away and which attracted her with its beauty. Entering the garden Alice meets a mean Queen and is disappointed.

Alice finally understands that she was dreaming of something that didn't really exist.

You can achieve harmony and happiness only by solving your present problems.

I think this fairytale was written about emigration. We all dream of a wonderland where we think we can find happiness. We run away from today's reality, with it's apparently unsolvable problems, trying to escape ourselves . But you can't run away from yourself!

Life in " The wonderful garden" often turns out a little better but more often worse than life in Russia, Ukraine , or the Baltic's , etc. Money doesn't grow on trees in the wonderlands of Europe and the USA. There is no Golden Rain, as many people think. Everything is like everywhere. They have rich and poor people, bureaucracy. They lack free medicine and education and it is horrible; poor, and always broken, public transportation; getting a good job only by acquaintance or by huge personal efforts.

Yes, level of life is much higher than in Russia but it also costs a lot more! Old men and women freeze to death in their cramped apartments because they don't have money to pay for expensive heating. Statistically, 100-200 thousand people die in winter. Patients die in hospitals, because free operations weren't made on time (there is a line for several years). That is also statistics. Homeless young people sleep on the streets, suicides jump under the same train I took to go to work. People are robbed on the streets. Recently, in our district a person was stabbed with a screwdriver in his head and died all because he wouldn't give his wallet.

Companies release thousands of workers. It is "pleasant" to hear about that on the radio, before going to work. This list can continue forever.

Mass media throws that negative garbage at us daily and it doesn't make our lives more joyful.

In England it is difficult to remain optimistic and wear rose colored glasses although it is necessary to wear them or you won't survive. ( Is this the reason why Englishmen are famous worldwide as a nation with the best sense of humor ? )

I don't want to talk you out of emigration .Everybody decides by himself . One friend visited her fiance in Europe and told me when she came back "I don't know what to do, to leave or not. I like it here and I like it there too!"

And I realized she was a happy person…

So I would like to tell everybody who left, is getting ready to leave, and everybody who won't go anywhere; "Solve your problems now and here, Don't run away from them, don't run after something that doesn't exist on face of the earth, an ideal place, country.

Look inside yourself and find that wonderful garden, and you will see how life miraculously changes and sparkles with wonderful colors.

With very best regards to all.

Translated by Alla Musshorn

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