12 thoughts on “INTERVIEW WITH REGIS TREMBLEY

  1. I liked it, but not much new stuff for regular blog readers, although there were some teasers at the end for part 2. Still, great to hear the person behind the blog (I wasn’t watching the video; just listened to the audio) and realize that I’ve been wrongly reading the posts in a Northeastern professor accent. Should have remembered you were from South Carolina…

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    • No, not much new to regular readers. I started not to publish it on the blog, but I”ve got some who have recently followed me. I cannot believe you have been reading MY posts in a Northeastern professor accent!!! NO!!! 🙂

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  2. Hal, have you ever talked about how your social security check is taxed by the U.S. and Russia? (If it is taxed; I’m not that familiar with social security, I’ve got 10 years before retirement age hits). That may be something useful to know for anyone thinking of moving there.

    Having looked at my expected benefits, the odds of my getting by in the U.S. are pretty thin. So an expat option may be the only option I can actually afford! If it comes down to that, Russia is at the top of my list, although learning Russian is, to say the least, daunting. But I really loved the country when I visited back in 2016 and I hope to return at some point in the future.

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    • My Social Security is not taxed b/c it is my only income. If I still had my job in America then they would tax that income and my SS. As it is I am not taxed. Russia does not tax any retirement income or pension income as they call it. Here Russians can get their pension, which is not taxed, and have another job. The other job is taxed (flat 13%), but not your pension. As it is w/ me since I have no other job my income is not taxed either by the U.S. or Russia.

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          • I’ll throw another one at you. How long did it take for you to prepare to move? You’ve mentioned you had to sale pretty much everything. What kind of downsizing did you end up doing (take any furniture, books, etc.)? How many trips did you make to Russia to scout your move before doing it? How did you decide on where you ended up?

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            • We really finalized the decision in our own minds the September before we moved the following June. I worked for my brother and went ahead and told him so he could be preparing for that. He stayed on the road selling and I managed everything in the office. Didn’t want to leave him on short notice. We then started selling things or getting rid of things that fall by putting notifications on Craig’s List. Then I think late October we had our first yard sale. We followed that up in early spring and late spring with two more yard sales and then had the final one just before we moved. The first yard sale was just mostly seasonal clothes we wanted to get rid of and extra items around the house. You know stuff you “accumulate” somehow. Each time we would get rid of more, with the last one being anything anyone wanted. People could just come and walk thru the house and see if they wanted anything. In the end we let some friends know they could come by and get what they wanted. I put ads on FB about my books. Since I taught at the University a number of these were academic books, which former colleagues or students wanted and I knew I’d never use again. Some I sold, but I gave away most of them. I did keep some books on Greek language, Russian History and Orthodoxy. I shipped those to Russia by boat on a pallet. We also shipped some household items but not furniture. (We got ripped off by that company that shipped them.) Since the last time we had been in Luga (8 years prior) we could not always find clothes and household items we needed, we packed up 10 large of suitcases and brought them with us on the plane. Aeroflot had super rates on excess baggage. That was a mistake, however. We can get anything we need here–clothes, household goods, furniture, etc. It would have been cheaper and much easier just to travel light and buy stuff here. My advice is bring needed clothes or items with sentimental value, but don’t waste your money shipping a bunch of stuff. I gave away a LOT of clothes after we got here.
              We made no trips here to prepare since Oksana had family and friends here. She called a friend here with 3 kids who she could be very honest with and asked her how much it cost them to live. She also had her parents start looking out for us an apartment. When we moved to Luga we were planning on staying just long enough to see how things went. We had lived in St. Petersburg before and really liked it. We heard of Fr. Joseph Gleason who was going to try and start an American Orthodox community in Rostov Veliki. (He moved to Russia the following January.) We came here to get to Russia and then figured we’d decide what to do after that. Luga was very backward when we were here before. But we discovered the city had changed so much. So much more available. Our kids really liked the schools. It took a while, but we eventually found a church we loved. We can get to St. Petersburg on the express train in an hour and a half. I talked to a guy I met on-line in St. Petersburg when we first got here. (American who was married to a Russian lady.) I told him what we paid for rent, etc., and he said it would be about 3 times that there in Piter. We did find a one (large) room apartment,plus a kitchen for my step-son when he went started to college in Piter. It is $250 a month plus utilities, and it is large enough for all of us to stay there for visits.

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              • Thanks again, Hal! It sounds like you had an “inside” advantage in Oksana. LoL! I know a couple of people from Russia (our parish has a fairly sizable Russian group) so I may ply them for information as the date gets closer. I’ve been to Russia once, mainly around Moscow and St. Petersburg on a pilgrimage with my parish. I’ll have to go again to do some scouting in different areas.

                Is there a link for Fr. Joseph Gleason’s community? He sounds like someone I’d like to look up.

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                • I did have an inside advantage! I hope to see you here one day. Fr. Joseph’s community never seemed to have materialized. I’m not sure he is still there.

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                  • Fr. Joseph is still in Rostov Veliky. I don’t know if there are many others who have joined them, as it is pretty rural, from my understanding. He is still there, though.

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                    • Yes, someone who visited there with them told me that was a big part of their decision not to go there–it was too rural for them. His wife recently posted some pics on FB from America and I wasn’t sure if they were in America or still in Rostov. But then yesterday she posted something about their first snow, so I figured they were in Rostov.

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