Hitchhiking in the Middle East of China (Kashgar – Xinjiang)

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The step between Kyrgyzstan and China is big. Huge. Two passport stamps and we are brought back nearer the Middle East than towards the far East we imagined China was. Minarets, veils, beards…

The giants of Skazka Canyon (Kyrgyzstan)

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Once upon a time, just like now, Issyk Kul was a piece of heaven on Earth. In spring the wind would carry the song of a citar and an invisible brush would freely paint strokes of green and blossom white

The woolen homes of the Kyrgyz

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Wool within wool. What is it? Like round fluffy white mushrooms, the temporary dwellings of the highland Kyrgyz dot the the mountain meadows. The yurts – their surreal portable homes sprout magically all across the summer pastures hidden in between … Read More

The donkeys of love (handmade in Kyrgyzstan)

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It’s almost sunset by the time we reach the tiny village of Shor-Bulak, by the shores of Issyk Kul. We have been walking under the sun and sweating for hours. A travellers stench steams from our socks as we take … Read More

7 ingredients for a happy workshop (In Issyk Kul)

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Workshops always promise to be fun, but are not always so. You may spend hours and days painstaikingly drafting the perfect program for your audience, taking into consideration everything that can go right and wrong, working out materials, printing stuff. … Read More

Back to walking (Kazakhstan – Kyrgyzstan)

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Charyn canyon cuts a miniature 80 km scar on the flat surface of the great Central Asian steppe. Definitely a beautiful piece of Kazakh scenery that would adorn our travel album on the way to Kyrgyzstan if it wasn’t for a most … Read More

9 months and we are born into the travel

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Visible crow’s-feet stick out from a reflection in the mirror. And I count one silver thread for each car we drive on. Above thirty the passing of time makes itself present in one’s skin. Fast, almost imperceptibly, each second, each … Read More

Teatime stories – A train across the steppe

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Rosa’s daydreams fly out of the window as she travels contemplating the colours of the steppe. The semi-desert thirsty shrubs give place to green pastures, to creeks and tiny lakes with a crown of canes and then back to a … Read More

Of humans, animals and god (Kazakhstan)

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It’s only a day since we left the Aral sea behind – a small, blue, shrinking dot on the Earth’s surface that has loomed disproportionately huge in our minds and the dream of which  filled up the vacuum of time … Read More

More than dust and sand (Travelling Turkmenistan – part 2)

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Through its deserts I roamed and its mountains I took for my protection And the breeze that blew from the valleys I took for Allah’s blessings Its deserts, rivers, and mountains, I took for the edifice the True One Built … Read More

Bathing in a mirage – in search for the Aral Sea (Kazakhstan)

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The Aral sea bed lies naked ahead. Its shells jingle like a million bells, freezing in the winter winds and boiling in the summer heat. We stand on the deck of a rusty old Russian ship that will never sink. … Read More

Stories of war and peace (Last days in Iraq)

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The road curves up and down, sliding through the gigantic still waves of a never-ending sea of mountains, only occasionally interrupted by lonely checkpoints. Spread all the way from Zakho to Basrah these bastions representing shaky security resemble scarecrows fighting … Read More

Mangistau – to Kazakhstan through the back door

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Painfully slow the truck stumbles through the dust. This is our baptism in Kazakh roads. “50 km take approximately 6 hours” – announces Ali, our driver, resignedly looking at the bumps ahead. Hours of absolutely nothing, a therapy for our … Read More

Beautiful Kurdistan! (Iraq travel continues)

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Iraq is green. Picturesque waves of blooming mountains disintegrate our cliched sandy image of the country. Foamy creeks run through fresh meadows overlooked by imposing rocky peaks.

Welcome to Central Asia (Travelling Turkmenistan part I)

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Flat, grey, arid waste lands greet the horizon in all directions.  Seemingly motionless, the sun hangs from the skyes, sternly monitoring the sandy soil, incinerating any brave and defiant growth of green.  Whatever escapes the scrutiny of the flaming rays … Read More

Travels in the “safe corner” of Iraq

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  The sky above flashes in lights. The screams are periodically muted by deafening blasts. Children run uncontrollably in all directions. If our parents give us a call right now and we excitedly admit that yesterday we crossed into Iraq … Read More

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