Pomegranate Kindness

   Pahlavi was the old name. The coastal town on the Caspian Sea is now called Anzali. It’s fairly typical of port towns. Fish markets, beach hotels, pizza joints, smell of deisel, seaside apartments and lagoon boat tourism. Nothing strikingly memorable here including the much touted lagoon tour. Ten years of severe drought in Iran has drastically depleted water levels.  This lagoon may well have … Continue reading Pomegranate Kindness

The taxi driver

   Our taxi driver veered off the highway through town down a dusty, narrow street. It wasn’t in the plan but what the heck. Resisting the arm waving ‘heyllooo’ shouting enthusiasm and generosity of Uzbeks is just futile. At the side of the substantial corn filled yard stood our driver’s wife. With paddle in hand she unglued the hot nan/lepioshka bread off the wood heated … Continue reading The taxi driver

Uzbek Watermelon

Never in my life have I tasted such an incredibly crisp, dripping watermelon slice. The smiling Uzbek market vendor guaranteed it and he definitely delivered. We have cycled down from the coolness of the thinner mountain air into the fertile Fergana valley area of Uzbekistan. Not only have temperatures pushed up to 35 C, but faces have rounded and softened, colourful fresh produce has reappeared, … Continue reading Uzbek Watermelon

‘I Have To Go’

Laundry? Check. Bills paid? Check. Letter of invitation to Uzbekistan application in? Check. Reduced bike load? Check. It is looking like we are nearing our final preparation stages before heading off to Kyrzgystan tomorrow. My bicycle and I are eyeing each other, throwing the occasional wink.  Thank you to all of you who have been sharing comments, stories, notes, poems, research, requests, emails and photos … Continue reading ‘I Have To Go’

This bone deep calling to Kotlas, Russia

   Sometimes there are stories that manage to snatch your soul and shake hard. The obsession with my Polish mother’s past wasn’t always like this. I didn’t even really understand the events or explanations for the African sculptures perched around our family home. As we embark on this journey I still am not sure I truly understand it, but here is an attempt at trying … Continue reading This bone deep calling to Kotlas, Russia