For decades, Russians have put up with a postal system known best for its dusty offices, long lines and rude officials, but most importantly, for completely unpredictable services. Many who often place onlines, such as collectors scouring Ebay for rare finds, say they have to bring cakes and flowers to their local postal workers as a form of added insurance, so that their mailings will not disappear.
Despite some level of computerization in recent years, even letters mailed within Moscow take up to a month. Talks of reforming the company, Russia's biggest employer, have dragged on for years, with no apparent effect. The company has requested 220 billion rubles (about $8 billion) for modernization.
Meanwhile, citizens are taking matters into their own hands, shooting videos of nasty interactions with RP workers and officials. This one of a Russian citizen trying to register a foreigner in his apartment (he was refused because the copy he presented was in black and white, not color), shows him, at about minute 9, being chased out of the postal office by a worker with a broom. [The video has gone viral with half a million views in just a few days.]
And then there is this one of RP workers unloading boxes from a train – many of the boxes even appear to have a distinctive logo on their sides. Hold on to the end to see one of the workers toss a box at the videographer.
Russian Life is a publication of a 30-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.
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