Monday, December 7, 2009

Tajikistan, day 3

While walking Sunday, I visited Rudaki Plaza which is on Rudaki, one of the largest thoroughfares here in Dushanbe. Radaki was a Tajik poet and folks here are very proud of his influence on their culture. The parks and walkways are truly generous and wonderful...large in the sense of the old Russian influence.

And I will also try to upload a photo of an old lady sweeping the street of leaves. I was told the reason so many women are in the streets working as sweepers and selling papers is a hold over from Soviet days when full employment was critical. Everyone works or tries to even if they make little to no money. This is woman's work.

Yesterday was very long and tiring but a good day. Good meetings. Met interesting and interested people. We have a new translator...his name, in short is Ganja and we laughed at this significance. Ganj has just returned from Moscow where he was working. Much back and forth still with Russia.

Met a media owner yesterday who is in danger of being shut down by the government because he criticized them. He has been warned and there are laws that indicate citizens and media cannot be critical of the government or its representatives. Makes conducting true journalism very difficult indeed.

Ate lunch at the Embassy and had "lasagna" which was made with phyllo dough and chicken. Tasty but not expected. Dinner with Drew, my contact here and we went to an Indian restaurant. Good food. Strange ambiance. Chinese chic??

Apparently photos are not coming this early morning. I cannot get hotmail and photos are not uploading nor am I connecting to Blogger.

Oh, an interesting thing is that all offices are hotter than hell, when the heat is on. And then, folks bring in space heaters to warm things up. The driver has the heat on full blast in the car and the windows in front don't open up. Air is an issue at times. I am not liking the cold weather but at least you can add clothing. When we get in these tight offices, with five adults, some of whom have not bathed in awhile...makes it a bit difficult to breathe. Oh and everyone is sick here...just a matter of time before I get whatever IT is.

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