My Ukrainian friends invited me to come to their exercise class. A Russian woman had been there 10 years earlier and taught them an aerobics routine--they had been following it to a "T" for the past 10 YEARS!!! That is how dedicated they are to being fit. They asked me to introduce them to yoga and we began practicing together in a unheated gym--my yoga friends from the States sent us mats! In the winter we could see our breath and our feet were blue. The women brought their kids and the kids raced around the gym and played basketball--it was loud and sometimes they would run right over the top of us. At first, I was irritated and told them that we needed to have a quiet space--they just looked at me and laughed! After a while, the noise seemed to grow dimmer--it just wasn't a big deal to me any more.
This photo is of one of my Ukrainian language tutors--Vika. She attended almost every class and brought her 4 year old daughter.