"first we have to sit down"

In Russia it is traditional for everyone to sit for a moment before embarking on a journey. Both the travellers and those staying behind sit for a short while in silence just before the moment of departure. Some people say that the custom is intended to cheat evil spirits into thinking that the travellers will be staying at home; others suggest that it is simply a moment to remember any forgotten items before leaving the house. It has also been suggested that the tradition comes from the time of the Golden Horde, when the Mongols ruled Russia: as a nomadic people they would frequently travel and developed certain rituals which have been transmitted to the Russians.