Our trip was fantastic. I plan to make a YouTube video with some of our pictures to try to let others know about this trip. I believe this trip should be a must for every visitor to Uzbekistan.
1. Olim was a delight. Though we had no language in common, he knows a few words in English and I know a few words in Russian and otherwise we tried to pantomime everything. I'm sorry we couldn't really have any real discussions; I'm sure he is a very interesting person and it would have been nice to know him better. But he is GREAT.
2. The ceramic workshop was very interesting. I like to visit places where people have kept old skills and handcrafts alive. Although I do visit a lot of museums, things in glass cases are only minimally interesting. Places like the ceramic workshop are more like living museums where you can see skills on display and talk to those who are doing it.
3. The petroglyphs were my #1 thing to see when I came to this country. I volunteer at a UNESCO World Heritage Site near where I live, so it was nice to see another UNESCO site, especially one with so much history.
4. The yurt camp was great, and the food was also excellent. Everyone was very friendly, even if we couldn't really speak with them. The roast and potatoes for dinner and the fish for lunch the next day were so delicious.
5. I thought the petroglyphs would be the best thing about this trip, but I was wrong - I think it was the singer at the yurt camp. That was absolutely the best. He is fantastic!
6. Due to the weather, seeing the lake was cool but would have been even better if we hadn't been so cold! But what can you do? The weather is what it is and this was the only week we had to do this trip (my husband has already left for home). On the other hand, due to the season, we basically had everyone's full attention, so it was like this trip was just for the two of us.
7. The camel ride was a treat.
8. The family we stayed with were also so welcoming and friendly and, again, the food was excellent. I generally do not like soup, but Nigina's soup was amazing. I also appreciated being asked to help prepare the plov for lunch the next day. I didn't go on the hike (arthritic knees) but being part of making lunch was even better.
They were all so great and are all fantastic examples of how friendly and wonderful the people of Uzbekistan are.