Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Hiking in a Dress

The yurt we were staying in was located in the valley at the bottom of a beautiful mountain rang. Sleeping three nights in a row in a yurt may not be the best for me (I am too much of the 'princess and the pea' to be sleeping on cold hard uneven ground), but it was so peaceful to just get away and rest with good friends for a few days.  So many of my trips are hectic tours with visitors jumping on bus after bus trying to see all that this province has to offer in one short week.  It was my end of the summer opportunity to say goodbye to the crowded city, goodbye to the car horns blearing in my ear, goodbye to the push of people on the bus, good bye to the squishing to find a place in the nonexistent lines, and instead say hello to the peaceful valley, hello the tall snow capped mountains, the goats running on the hill side, hello to the simple life.  We had time to hike or just sit back and read a good book.

The sounds were peaceful… the baaaing of sheep as the shepherd herded his  goats through an old grave yard, the sound of waterfalls splashing down from high mountain peaks, a Kirgiz famer still using the old ways of swinging his sickles through the air by hand and cutting the long field grass, the techno sound of a loud ringing cell phone going off in the middle of nowhere( hey wait... that doesn't fit in the peaceful picture).  This same Kirgiz famer, who relies of the traditional means of harvesting the field, reached into his pocket and pulled out a fancy app phone with all the latest gadgets ( My eight year old cell phone just couldn’t compare).


I really didn’t know what to make of this guy,and he certainly didn't know what to make of me.  He was the same Kirgiz man who had greeted our gang as we got off the van with  “Look, she is a foreign women and she is wearing a skirt”.  This man lives at the foot the “the Father of Ice Mountians”, he is use to seeing adventure seeking man and women come from all over the world with all their fancy hiking gear and take on the over 7500 meter trek.  He is not use to white women who study local culture, speak and local language and have time to stand around and chat with him and his wife.  True my outfit choice wasn’t the best for hiking, but it did leave a lasting impression on them.  

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