“Hot Topic” in Ukraine

New visitors to Ukraine may be surprised by the ubiquitousness of Hot Topic stores (more so in Kyiv than L’viv it seems to me). With at least one, sometimes several, on every street, novice travelers might easily conclude the American retail chain specializing in music and punk/rock culture-related clothing and accessories has a strangle hold on the Ukrainian market.

But wait! Upon closer inspection, travelers semi-competent with Cyrillic letters may realize the signs are actually “Нотаріус” (No-ta-ree-us) which is Ukrainian for notary. Sorry, novelty T-shirt lovers. The abundance of notaries speaks to one of the most popular, activities of Ukrainians: getting things stamped.

Notary Sign in Ukraine - Notarius

Notary Sign in Ukraine - Notarius

Notary Sign in Ukraine - Notarius

Notary Sign in Ukraine - Notarius

Notary Sign in Ukraine - Notarius

Notary Sign in Ukraine - Notarius

2 Comments

  1. Paul Vahur

    I had a similar experince of things being misread, but this one was online.

    I once asked a business partner to e-mail his proposal to my company’s management’s e-mail address juhatus@mycompany.com (“juhatus” means management in Estonian). He wrote me back advising to change the e-mail address because he read it as jew-haters :-/

    Reply
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