I am faced with a dilemma. I was accepted into a physics REU in a top 20 school to study something I'm really interested in. I also received a competitive scholarship to study Russian in Russia for 10 weeks this summer... all expenses paid. I have to choose. I'm a junior and this will be the last summer I'm eligible for REU's. I want to go to a good graduate school (top 20, at least), and have been doing research for a professor for the last 3 semesters. My GPA is above a 3.98. I also had a physical oceanography REU last summer. I'm really torn between the REU and Russia. Would graduate schools frown upon a "wasted" summer in Russia? Would it help me get in? Do I have enough pluses on my application so that Russia or an REU won't matter? I'm also looking for some general opinions from physicists who have studied abroad and whether they thought it was worth it. Opinions??? Help???