Thursday, 3 March 2016

Soviet myth and reality

For a bit of diversion.

This is very funny if you are old enough to remember Aeroflot. I remember on a flight between Moscow and Delhi they gave out oranges. When they ran out the other half got apples.

Smiles were non-existant.

I remember the old joke. "Why do those people in from have better seats.? Are they in First Class?"

"Oh no," says the air hostess, "there are no classes on Aeroflot. They pay more"

The first time I flew Aeroflot (from Singapore to Delhi) they did not allocate seats, so there was a mad rush to get the best seats.

This Aeroflot TV Ad from the 1970s is Very Funny (Must See TV)

A brief musical retro trip to much simpler times with Russia’s state Aeroflot airline

'Fly Aeroflot!'

'Keep your money in Savingsbank!'

Since childhood I remember seeing advertisements like these displayed on the streets and in offices. They looked strange because Aeroflot was the only airline and Savingsbank the only bank available for flying or keeping money respectively.

The service was of course, as Russians would say ‘unimposing’, that is, it left much to be desired.

Tickets were hard to get but they were incredibly cheap and affordable for almost any family. These days it’s the other way round; carriers are many but flying, say from Vladivostok to Moscow would be quite taxing, even for middle middle class families.

Whatever Soviet citizens lacked in goods and services, they compensated with imagination, transforming things into brilliant art forms.

See for yourselves in this clip from a 1970’s TV show, including some of the most popular actors of the time.

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