Photographer's Note

All good things must come to an end… Even the most fascinating trips don’t last forever. After two weeks in some of the most remote regions of Central Asia I arrived back in the capital of Tajikistan.

I probably wouldn’t even contemplate taking a photo of this landscape, I would maybe even think “what a shame these uninspiring blocks spoil the view of the mountains”, but the sudden burst of light was so attractive that it made me grab my camera and shoot.

I was going to title this post “Ray of Hope” but decided it wasn’t relevant. The Tajiks I met during my travels seem to be very positive about their past, present and future. During my many travels in the former Soviet Union I often asked The Big Question: “Do you think life is better now than it was under the Soviets” and often heard a negative reply. Many people, particularly the older generation, seem to feel quite sentimental about the times “zah soyoozah” (literarily “under the Union”). Not the Tajiks though. Everyone I asked responded their life was better now.

Moreover, they didn’t complain about the past either. Minutes before this photo was taken… I got stopped by the police. Or rather by one policeman keen to practice his English (much as I would have preferred to practice my Russian). He didn’t really need it, as his English was very good and he was well-travelled too. He told me about his participation in the humanitarian mission in Sudan some years earlier. He found it interesting I had just visited Afghanistan and told me:

“If we hadn’t been a part of the Soviets, we would have shared the fate of the Tajiks living in Afghanistan: the never-ending war, the poverty, the backwardness. And instead, we now have peace and freedom. Look around - all these beautiful buildings, the clean streets, the culture, we owe all that to the Soviet occupation”.

Strange twist of fate indeed.

Two “nothing special” images from Dushanbe in WS.

pajaran, jemaflor, Fis2, macjake, jhm, Royaldevon, jean113, PaulVDV, ChrisJ, pierrefonds has marked this note useful

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Additional Photos by Kasia Nowak (kasianowak) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1692 W: 9 N: 3499] (17676)
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