Friday, April 01, 2005

Central Asia

On Wednesday, I read the news for the first time in several weeks due to the fact that I've been moving, etc. I learned several things, including that there is a country I swear I have never ever heard of in my life-- Kyrgyzstan. I looked at it on the map I wondered who these people are and what they do.
I then realized I have a deep fascination Central Asia and perhaps ALWAYS HAVE. This is due to the fact that in the 9th grade, I asked my World Geography teacher what race far eastern Russians were (which, indicentally, my teacher didn't really answer. dick).
Also, one of my favorite restaurants is a Mongolian barbeque.
So, last night I literally could not fall asleep I was so obsessed with Central Asia. Like, why haven't I learned anything about these countries? Why do archeology and artifact type museums have nothing from Central Asia?
Also, a few months ago there was this article in the New York Times about Mongolia's push to make English the nation's second language.
In any case, I've spent like all day reading about various Central Asian countries. Apparently, it's quite difficult to travel to those CIS countries, but I really want to go there. I literally cannot imagine anything more foreign than those countries (which I am not spelling out due entirely to laziness and uncertainty). I mean, for chrissakes, they play a sport involving a headless goat that somehow looks a bit like rugby.
Has anyone been to Armenia? Azerbaijan? Kazakhstan? I just cannot imagine it, though I've spent much of the day looking at pictures and reading about drinking fermented mare's milk. I am disappointed, Jubin, that you aren't going to go to Kyrgyzstan as I would really like to hear about it.
If anyone else is fascinated, I found www.eurasianet.org to be a nice resource. Also, Lonelyplanet.com.
Really, this is a plea for your wonder and wanderlust.

4 comments:

wanderius thrax said...

so last year (or the year before) i was at the post office being helped for a little while, and this 20-something dark haired woman, wearing the most fabulous "communist red" sweater came in and while waiting to be helped, she was examining the photographs of employees on the wall, and myron (the office flirt, who was helping me) pointed out "if you're looking for me, i'm not up there" and she responded with something like "of course not, they could never do justice to the real life you!" except phrased with more charm. i wish i remember exactly what she said. it was kind of the friendly and flirtatious banter that would almost never come from the mouth of an uptight and undereducated american girl! clearly she was not from around here. she looked like the highly cutltured daughter of foreign royalty, probably with oil-drilling ties. what was she doing in suburbia? anyway, we both talked a little with her and it turned out she was mailing a package back home to her family in the exotic land of kazakhstan! if only i had become her best friend...and accompanied her on her next journey home...for the tour of the beautiful kazakhstany countryside! if only.........
scott

ruth said...

Don't worry, you probably aren't missing much. Though the 9th largest country in the world, Kazakhstan is apparently devoid of natural beauty. Also, what natural beauty it might have had was likely destroyed when the USSR used it as its nuclear testing ground.
I am, however, THRILLED that you met someone from Central Asia.
Also, Ali G's Borak character is from Kazakhstan, which I initial thought was a made up -stan.

ruth said...

maybe it's borat...

wanderius thrax said...

the thought of visiting kazakhstany nuclear testing sites just makes the place sound all the more exotic! someday my friend kathleen and i and her sister and i forgot who else are supposed to take this special nuclear tour in nevada where you have to like pass a government security check bla bla bla bla before being approved. can't wait!!!!!