I'm from Canada. I was born in Kelowna, a small town on the shores of a lake called Okanagan, where, legend has it, lives a lake monster called the Ogopogo or Naitaka. It's Canada's version of the famous "Loch Ness" monster of Scotland. Okay, our monster is not as well known as "Nessie" but, if you ask me, it's a lot scarier. Does it really exists? Well, there is a statue of the monster in the city where I was born, so... it must be real! Or how would the artist have known how to make it? But, I suppose I'll have to leave you to make up your own mind on that matter.
As a child I spent time living in Canada and the U.S. as well as various countries in Latin America. My parents worked in English language schools in Columbia, Mexico and Argentina! So I got a good multi-cultural experience from a young age. I also learned Spanish, which has been a great benefit to me over the years. Hola. A donde esta la fiesta? Vamos a bailar! Some important Spanish phrases.
In 1996 my life changed forever. I came to Russia on a humanitarian mission. It was January and it was really, really -- really cold. My colleagues and I spent a few days in Moscow, seeing the sights, taking the photos and paying our respects to Comrade Lenin. Then we traveled to Novosibirsk, where... we froze. In July, when summer finally came, we thawed out and life continued, however, while I was frozen I missed my flight back to the U.S., so I was forced to stay in Siberia.
This was not a bad thing, however, because it was here, in Russia, that I met a beautiful young woman who became my wife! We were colleagues in our humanitarian project and we had a lot in common: for example, our birthday. We are both born on June 12th. And every year the whole great country of Russia celebrates with us! It really is wonderful!