What Does It Mean to Be Ukrainian?

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I always rely and act according to what my rational sense tells me. That is how my parents raised me and their behavior was an example for me. As a result, I rarely follow my intuition or bliss. When I face difficulties, I usually list all the advantages and disadvantages and based on them make my decisions. However, sometimes I feel like I should have done some things the other way, though they seem logically based. My parents always tried to persuade me that Ukraine is not a good country to live in. As I studied in a Ukrainian school that propaganded patriotism from the first grade, it was very hard for me to understand and accept their point of view. To help me decide they gave me a chance to travel and see the world and to choose the place in which I feel most comfortable. During the last five years I visited three different countries. Each one of them changed me in some way and helped me to understand who I am inside. In each country I traveled, even though it was difficult at times, I tried to remain Ukrainian and not hide my Ukrainian culture. The first country I visited was Italy. When I was thirteen years old I went there with my classmates for a month. From the first moment I was in love with the gondolas of Venice and the numerous monuments of Milan. A year later I traveled to France twice; and then to the USA. Those three countries changed me completely on the inside as well as on the outside. I started to view the things not only from one point of view, but from a lot of different ones. Now I cannot imagine my life without visiting Paris again; and I will never forget the shining downtown of Chicago. However, that love for these three countries did not make me forget that beauty of my own one. Instead, it gave me willingness to tell and show all the great sides of Ukraine to everyone. My trips made me feel that Ukraine is not the only country that shines; that there are a lot of other cities and towns that are as beautiful. However, the beauty is...
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