TIME AND PLACE

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Last post of last days of last trip of 2019. I admit to wimping out on our day and one-half in Istanbul. I did spend a spectacular few days there in 2011. Go to https://mneset.me/2011/09/25/bus-about/ for my pictures to prove it! If I appear ever so slightly defensive it’s because I probably should be embarrassed that the highlight of this trip for me was visiting LC Waikiki, a French clothing chain that… Read More

The trip was winding down by the time we reached Almaty. I’ve already posted photos of my very fine borscht plus fat and dumplings meal. (https://mneset.me/2019/09/26/on-the-trail-of-borscht-and-dumplings/).The next day we actually made it to the Kazakhstan Museum of Arts. I was primarily interested in paintings from this last century and was not disappointed. There was a good collection of work reflecting Kazakhstan’s nomadic steppe cultures, its Russian and Soviet heritage, and its place… Read More

Morning in Khujand was mostly spent at the Panchshanbe Bazaar, said to be the largest bazaar in Central Asia. And it was grand.   Then we drove off to Isfara.   Our last meal with Beck and Amok. Who had come to feel like lifetime companions and our caretakers in a new land. Walking across the border to Kyrgyzstan. And then we were in Kyrgyzstan on the way to Osh. The next… Read More

The drive from Lake Iskanderkul to Khujand took up a good part of the day but like all of our time in Tajikistan it was low-key, filled with engaging conversation, and worthy scenery. Every travel experience is partly about that place at that moment in time and partly about our physical and mental health while there. But there are also the serendipitous moments/insights that appeal to all of our senses and to… Read More

  Who knew that my (almost certainly) last-ever job offer would be in Tajikistan. No wonder I am so enamored of the place. I understand that Ruth and Nancy are out there saving the world for democracy…still, at our ages, job offers aren’t plentiful. Since this was the most exciting event (for me) of the entire trip, please allow me to elaborate. We reached Lake Iskanderkul in the early evening, settled into… Read More

If I go on and on about Tajikistan for a few posts please understand…it was a nearly perfect few days in a place unlike any other I’ve been in…also it was the few days before we all came down with the nasty, nastier and nastiest bug that colored our experience dull gray for awhile. So here’s the second of four Tajik posts; this one primarily a photo album. After a good night’s… Read More

Lace says we shouldn’t make comparisons between countries/places—as in better or worse. I believe it’s okay to have favorites however (unless it’s children, grandchildren or the family dogs). Tajikistan is my favorite country for this 2019 trip and will remain among my favorites of all-the-countries-in-the-world. Tajikistan is basically a whole lot of mountain ranges squished into a small country with a modest strip of the Fergana Valley (the breadbasket and ethnic trouble… Read More

How is it I almost forgot to post a photo album from Samarkand, that most exotic of Silk Road cities? It says something to me about where my head has been this entire year…it is hard to pay attention to the world when one is creating a new identity for oneself. I’ve been trying to describe what’s happening to me but lack the verbal skills—perhaps it’s the crossing of a Rubicon that… Read More

MADE IT! Lazarus-like, I’m back from the world of couch-whimpering, Mhz streaming, ice-cream eating and eight-sleeps for every 24 hours. I’ve been quite ill for awhile…more importantly however I. Have. Traveled. Long. Silk. Road. Miles. No competition for Marco Polo I’m afraid, nevertheless insightful, challenging, fun and funny. You know the first part of the story. The early September California wedding, then Scott, Lace and me off to Tashkent, Uzbekistan, a train… Read More

9-26 (By the way…Now, an even later ‘now,’ we are all healthy happy and in Istanbul where I’m trying to take a nap and we just had a tremor…only good for a small room shaking. I’m starting the catch up blogging plan NOW… 9-23 KAZAKHSTAN: An earlier Now. However…Now is now…but here are some early morning musings from yesterday. It might be about 5am Tuesday morning the 24th. Surprisingly hard to keep… Read More