With the recent expansion of the Internet, it is clear that as a race, humans feel more connected to each other than ever before. It seems as though we are much more similar than we are different in this new globalized world. However, cultural differences are still manifested in countless ways and these declarations of cultural independency are something frequently cherished by Parker in his writing. With his book, Where Bears Roam the Streets English Professor at the University of Massachusetts, Jeff Parker explores the culture of Russia and documents his life-changing trip through the foreign country. Parker not only identifies the differences between Russia and the United States, but also admires them. It is clear that Professor Parker has developed a deep bond with Russia and his friend Igor of whom much of the book is about.
Parker reminisces about his first time in the Russian Bathhouses with his newfound friend, Igor, "You enter into these huge steel Russian doors and it feels like you're entering a fortress.[…] I didn't really know what to do. I was just following Igor's lead!".
To any frequent traveler, Parker's experiences sound relatable, but simultaneously, Parker does a masterful job at capturing the remarkable unfamiliarity of the moment and conveying the sense of wonder that overcomes him throughout his incredible journey through Russia.