Thursday, 30 August 2012

Uzbekistan 21st June – 19th July 2012

TASHKENT: Currently 2800 Uzbeki Som to the Dollar on the black market (around 1800 officially). Highest denomination is the 1,000 Som note - queue obligatory money shot.

TASHKENT: The owner of the guesthouse playing the Dutar translated, literally as 'two string'.

I threw a strop when he said I had to pay a dollar a night for keeping my bike at the guesthouse while I was away touring the country.

Oh yeah, I didn't cycle much in Uzbekistan.

SAMARKAND: The Registan. I snuck in the back so I didn't have to pay.

SAMARKAND: Bibi-Khanym Mosque. And locals hugging the shadows.

SAMARKAND: Shah-i-Zindah Mausoleum 'ensemble'.

SAMARKAND: shah-i-Zindah tile detail.

BUKHARA: The Ark at sunset. Home of exotic despots.

BUKHARA: Char Minar 'four minarets' mosque.

BUKHARA: You hot bastard.

BUKHARA: Kalon Minaret. 47 metres tall, 10 metre deep foundations. So good Chinnigis Khan didn't knock it down. Which was nice of him, becuase you know, he gets a lot of bad press.

KHIVA: Poor plug to appliance ratio.

KHIVA: Kalta Minor Minaret: unfinished, legend says, because completed you would be able to see into the Khan's harem.

MOYNAQ: Formerly a fishing village on the Aral Sea now shop-front for The Apocalypse.


YANGIYO'L: Back on the bicycle heading to the Tajikistan border. Asked to put my tent up in a farm, a farmer led me back to his house where his self-consciously short family fed me up.

BEKOBOD: Near the Tajikistan border. Babur and his son putting my bike in the boot of his Lada. More cheating, but in my defence, I had a hell of a hangover.

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