Our city, Izhevsk
I'd like to tell you about my native town. Izhevsk is very large industrial town locted in the European part of Russia between the Volga River and the Ural mountains. It has a population of about 700.000. Izhevsk was founded in l760 as a settlement. The industrial development f the history began with the construction of an iron works. In 1918 Izhevsk became a town and since 1921 it has been the capital of Udmurtia.
By the middle of the last century Izhevsk had become one of the largest industrial centres of the Urals region. During World War II, Izhevsk was a major supplier of small arms. Mikhail Kalashnikov, the designer of the famous assault rifle, a living legend, lives and works in Izhevsk, he is its honorary citizen. Originally, Izhevsk's indusrty aimed at defence needs. The largest local industrial companies are: Izhmash (produces automobiles and motorcycles, machine tools), Izhstal (produces high quality steel), Mechanical Plant (produces hunting and sport riffles), Oil Equipment Factory (produces equipment for the oil industry), Radiozavod - a radio producer, Motozavod (produces communication sistems). Radical market reforms have caused serious economic difficulties for all these enterprises. Trade, restaurant business and services are now almost wholly owned by the private sector.
Izhevsk has a high intellectual potential. There are research institutes of the Russian Academy of Sciences, two Universities, Agricultural and Medical Academies.
Being the capital of Udmurtia, Izhevsk is also a big cultural centre. There are four theatres, many cinemas, sport facilities. If a visitor comes to Izhevsk for the first time, he is always advised to visit the Museum of Local Lore, where he may learn a lot about the history of Udmurtia and Izhevsk. There are some buildings in Izhevsk which are really interesting from the point of view of architecture. Our Theatre of Opera and Ballet is a very peculiar building and many visitors find it highly original. We are also proud of the Izhevsk pond embankment, it's a nice place for taking a long walk.
It was impossible for a foreigner to visit our city just a few years ago. Now, thanks to the development democratic tendencies in Russia, Izhevsk is open to everybody!
Today's world is often called the computer world. We cannot imagine our life without computers. The first computers were developed during the Second World War. They were used to break the codes, used to send secret information.
Our world is really a small world. Modern transport facilities make it possible to reach any part of our planet within a few hours. People have to communicate and solve common problems in all the spheres of political life, economy and culture. Communication is an interaction of cultures. The knowledge of each other's culture and traditions is very often important for successful business and political talks. We, Russians, very often surprise our foreign partners by our behavior and manners.
Unemployment is a very urgent problem today. Years ago when a man left school he learnt some job and did this job all his life. He could be sure that his job would be needed to his dying day. Nowadays he couldn't be sure. Your work may look like a very good job at present, but it may not be needed in 10 years.
Drug addiction is a big problem today. Even 5 years ago this problem did not exist in small towns. We read about drug addicts in the USA and other countries of the West. This problem existed in big cities like Moscow and St. Petersburg. Today different drugs are sold in our city and what is worse they are bought and taken by people, mostly young people. Drugs are ruinous for health and they destroy the personality of those who take them.
We can't call today's world a safe world. Many dangers come from nature, I mean floods, earthquakes and so on. But people are also dangerous for each other. Unfortunately, there are some people who don't stop at anything to achieve their aims. They even think 'the more victims the better'. Our country was one of the first to have terrorist attacks. I mean the attacks in Moscow when two apartment houses were destroyed. There were acts of terrorism in all parts of the world at the end of the 20th century: in Japan, in England and in France.
Science is finding out about things around us. How do you find out about things? One way is to ask questions about them. But suppose no one knows the answers. Then you have to think of ways to find the answers yourself. This usually means doing something to the «thing» to see what happens. Doing something to see what happens is called experimenting. Scientists ask questions about things around us.
The Udmurt Republic is a sovereign republic within the Russian Federation. It is situated in the Western part of the Middle Urals between two great rivers the Kama and the Vyatka. In 1991 the republic became open for foreign visitors. Since that time Udmurtia has had close and friendly relations with many countries of the world in the fields of culture, education, trade, sport and tourism. The Government of the republic is very much interested in the development of local tourism.
When you get up in the morning, you have breakfast and usually listen to the weather forecast. Some of us think it's unnecessary, but some tend to do it.
Fashion is a thing that we have to keep up with, whether you like it or not. Anyway it’s important to look attractive. But it doesn’t mean that you should be a fashion-conscious. It may turn to a waste of money. If a person doesn’t have good taste he is not able to put things together. Trendy people want to stand out in a crowd, but sometimes they don’t look stylish.
Although much has been written about this subject, whenever we are puzzled about it. We ask the question: What is love? Love means different things to different people. Children regard love from their point of view, while they are very young. As we grow older, love grows into different dimensions with our maturing. Love changes constantly, because we change from day to day.