A unknown man came to my door on official business and greeted me in Russian! It turns out he recognized my name as his Russian teacher in h.s. and had gone on a mission for his church to St. Petersburg. I’m always amazed at how fluent the RMs (returned missionaries) are. But a Mormon attorney observed the other day that their language, while fluent, is limited to the interactions they have going door-to-door proselytizing.
I responded to him in Russian before I knew who he was or what his business was and he quickly identified himself and mentioned another student in his class who he was still in touch with. He complimented me on my teaching, which was very nice of him. He graduated in 1995, so he had my class in 92 and 93, just before Russian enrollments dropped all over the country and I lost the class for 4 years before getting it back.