treasures on the silk road

Kyrgyzstan is part of the silk road and
we got a chance to traverse on it

the roads were surrounded by mountains
of different shades changing colors along the way

but i was more impressed
by all that we saw on the road

the first stop was by this burana tower replica
(’twas nice because we didn’t get to go to the main site)
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altho probably made for the fancy burana hotel
with their private beach and an interesting sculpture park

but some distance down the road
there were plums, peaches, melons
and these kyrgyz ladies who were selling
watermelons that seemed larger than life…

for some reason i always imagined
these striped watermelons being sold
by a lady with a red head scarf and wallah…
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i found her 🙂
we bought a melon, watermelon
and had a hearty laugh about how
we couldn’t find the right time to eat them

another treasure was this lady who served us
the juiciest sweet corn i have had in all my life

i wish i could’ve taken more pictures of the road
but we started late and our destination was quite far
so we couldn’t stop wherever we wanted just for the picture

if going was sunny, it was a little rainy on the way back
but our pitstops kept getting better and multifarious

first were these apricots, apples and seabuck thorn
sold at a price that i wish i could carry it all…

then we saw some dried fishes and fermented dairy
(didn’t buy either coz we were leaving the next day)

one of the best and last stops was at the kattama joint
-paratha kinda bread that is eaten with cream
if you want there are boiled eggs to go along


we were blessed to have traveled through
the same road that the caravans took
bringing back these treasures
from the silk road…

 

 

 

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ala too square

located in the heart of bishkek city
ala too square is the one place you need to know
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if you need to meet up with friends and have no phone nor wifi
just agree to meet in front of manas statue at ala-too…alatoo5apparently, there used to be a lenin statute
which has since been removed and replaced
by the mighty manas – hero of the Kyrgyz people

nearby is the Kyrgyz flagpole where
soldiers change guard during evenings

there are a few fancy atractions
like the kids double decker bus,
a horse chariot and a toy train

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it seems to be a popular hangout for city kids
riding their bikes, roller skating and having a blast

opposite the manas statute were these
colourful dancing fountains that
visitors from out of capital city
seemed to enjoy and relish

as a visitor in the city i liked this square a lot
there was a sense of freedom and openness
for new beginnings under the kyrgyz sky.

 

 

ala archa national park

if you want to hike the central asian mountains and
you only have one day -ala archa hike is your destination.

the landscape is beautiful and the mountain range is breathtaking…

the park’s altitude ranges from 1500 to 4895 metres.

one can opt for higher altitude glacier walk
or the river trail (which the locals usually take)
and our group opted for the ak-sai waterfall trail.

the waterfall was located at an altitude of 2860 metres
while it was rather steep at some points, it was very refreshing

though we had a huge team and not everyone could make it to the waterfall
we all got to experience the sunny, beautiful walk in tian shan mountain range

when we got to our base
we chanced on this natural pool
the water was obviously from the glacier
crystal clear, cold and quite inviting actually…
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as we made way back to our bus
i saw this abandoned house and thought
what stories it would have gathered in its lifetime
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camp nou experience

cpnou8camp nou is home ground for fc barcelona
their slogan ‘mes que un club’ means
more than a club so we were in
for the camp you experience

the place is teeming with fans
from all over the world and
messi is their selling factor

the displays were well organised and
the many trophies shone from its stands

one new thing I learned was
barca was a catalán club

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the tour basically allows one to go inside their
press rooms, locker room and the jacuzzi too

I liked seeing their little chapel on the right
as they make way towards the stadium
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the tour was extensive with full sound effects
of cheering crowds, commentators etc.

the view from the press box was super impressive
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barceloneta beach

barceloneta beach is a popular one
there is something to do for everyone

from paddle boarding to volleyball
to just chillin’ with friends after a swim
it looked like a fun- happening beach to be in

i particularly liked the thick waves…

but the funniest was finding south asian men
selling odd items including bedsheets and samosas

barceloneta port is clean and you can walk
past the harbour where ships are docked and
you can see the connection of humans and the sea

the best part in barceloneta was eating paella
-a valencia dish for the first time (also it was my birthday)

so it was indeed a happy beach birthday for me 🙂

 

 

bus to barcelona

 

took an overnight bus from paris to barcelona
it was only 30 euros and we had crossed borders
without all the immigration hassle
as we arrived in barcelona nord the next morning

first hour, we hung around the university area
and of course barcelona street art caught my attention
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the barcelona city tour buses were plying all over
one was parked in front of the cathedral basilica of barcelona
which looked very grand, impressive, crowded and under construction

there were also very many old interesting buildings
as we walked and walked and walked the first day in barca