Saturday, November 6, 2010

Petroglyphs and Cholpon-Ata

Issyk-Kul, day two.

We had received a tip from none other than Victor to take a taxi into Cholpon-Ata and go to the petroglyphs, the marina, and the museum.  Victor is one to pay attention to.  He knows his stuff and he's just one of those pleasant people you want to get to know better.  I am truly glad to have him around the school.  He's simply great.

We arranged for a taxi from the sanatorium to Cholpon-Ata and were dropped off at the petroglyphs.  One of our co-workers (Cate, from MN) joined us for the day.

This is a very cool area situated on a large alluvial fan.  Numerous large boulders are strewn around the entire place, many of which have the carvings on full display.  The site is dated back to around 2000 BC.  This is much older than you and I.  In fact, it's much older than even your parents.  Along with the carved stones, there were many stone circles which have been identified as more recent (1000 BC), though still older than you and I.

We had another day of beautiful weather, and enjoyed being outside greatly.  We walked from the petroglyphs back to town, which brought us by a local cemetery.  Many of the graves are traditional Islamic markers, though most of them have pictures of the deceased, which tells me that this is not a devoutly Muslim culture.  It was interesting all the same.

After the cemetery, we walked down to the lake.  Although we didn't actually make it to the marina, we did have a nice little snack in what felt like a picnic table-less cove on Lake Tahoe.  The yellow of the birch trees was fantastic.

Following this brief snack, we walked the main street in Cholpon-Ata and found a small cafe for lunch.  We had what is become our favorite fall-back, Логман (lahgman) and followed it up with a trip to the museum.  The museum has local, Kyrgyz historical artifacts going as far back as possible, and bringing us up to Kyrgyzstan's independence in 1991 (ish).  It was great, although the descriptions were in Russian and Kyrgyz only.

All told, a good day.  The fall colors by the lake were great.  Here's what I believe is an apricot tree.

No comments:

Post a Comment