Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Central Asia

Posted by Hippo Bean at 11:59 PM
As it turned out, that bloody family with the 2 noise kids and the uzbek dressed woman and the 2 young men were also in the same flight to Tashkent. They probably stayed at SVO for 10 hrs while I was out enjoying the russian capital with C. The airbus to Tashkent was old, dirty with stinky toilets. And they showed this horrible soviet movie with Uzbeks wearing the traditional costumes singing. but the food was good. I couldnt wait to get out of that plane, have my visa stamped, and get my luggage and get to that hotel bed. I was at the verge of collapsing of fatigue. but the line through passport control was long, without order and things moved at snail pace. people just kept cutting in the line. i was praying for my luggage to show up and when a small red suitcase with a green handle drag itself out on the carousel, alleluia! now I have clothes to change and my own soap and shampoo. nobody told us we needed to fill out custom forms. everyone was scrambling to find a form. and we needed to fill out 2. so he guy at the custom counter sent me back to fill out another form. uzbek people are very kind. even not knowing our language, they've tried to help us with the forms because there werent any forms in english. my pickup was there, then finally we made it to the hotel and i just crashed. by then it was already 6:30am!

The hotel room was small as well as the single bed. The bathroom, european style, tiny and it of course flooded after I showered. Breakfast was very good though. Plenty of fruit, eggs and crepe like pancake with meat. Good coffee. Tried to go for a walk after breakfast and a shower, but there was nothing interesting close to the hotel. At noon, everyone checked out and sat out in the lobby to wait for the transfer to the Dedeman hotel. We've waited for 2 hours and were ready to mutiny when Bazil, our tour leader, finally arrived, apologetically. Something about being stuck in Istanbul, arriving late, blah blah blah . First sign of many more disorganization and caos to come. The room at the Dedeman was nice with a wonderful bathroom. Some of us ventured out to see the square with Timur's statue and the nearby bazar. Fruit and produce, some spices and lots of dried fruit and bread. Their bread is round, ginormous and very very tasty. The bazar not entirely too interesting. Late in the day, perhaps the merchants not too keen on selling. Dinner at a nearby Russian restaurant that had well, not too Russian food, but the food was excellent. Good clear noodle soup, meat dumplings, lamb and chicken and plenty of salad. The Dedeman hotel was much better. The rooms were small but the bed was big and comfy, the duvet thick and the pillows adequate. The bathroom was the best part. Clean and big and everything worked and it didnt flood. The hotel offered free internet to guests. Except for the hickup waiting for the hotel transfer, not a bad start. Cant wait to see what else Uzbek has to offer.

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