Budget Tours and Excursions in St-Petersburg. The old-fashioned and mystifying city of Russia.
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It is really hard if not impossible to find out when exactly this strong drink got the name "vodka". The word has obviously derived from "water" - voda and became its pet name - "vodon'ka", "vodichka". There is also a beautiful legend about the birth of the famous drink's name. As it is known, the first foreigners came to the Russian city Archangelsk by sea. The English merchants entered the pub and were very surprised by how the Russian seafares (sailers) rinse their throats. They asked them: how does the biggest man drink to the extent of being absolutely waisted? And one of the Russians takes a glass, fills it in with about 200 grams of the bread vodka, drinks it all and says: "Vot kak" (In Russian meaning "here is the way").
There are hundreds of traditions and jokes in Russia connected with vodka. For example in the Russian Army when you are given the next army rank you must put your stars from the straps into a glass full of vodka - minimum 200 grams maximum 400 depending on the region in Russia. You have to drink it all in one gulp and show everyone that the stars are hold by your teeth. It means - you have passed.
Once Gorbi came to a small town to check the local industry. The workers of some defense enterprise invited him to a meeting and then as usually had a little banquet. The next day Gorbachev looked into the mirror and saw no birthmark on his head. He was insane. He went to the factory and asked the workers: "what did we drink yesterday?" "It was a stain remover" - they answered.
Mendeleev, the Russian professor from the Technological Institute of St. Petersburg is considered to be a tsar of Russian vodka. He defended a Ph.D thesis at the end of the XIX century on "Mixing vodka and water", proving that the ideal ratio would be not fifty-fifty, but 40% of spirit and 60% of pure water. There is a monument to Mendeleev near the Technological Institute. Students celebrate the famous professor's birthday in April. Some polish his nose for good luck.28.04.2017
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