July - August 2019
  • Day6

    Stud farm near Ashgabat

    July 31, 2019 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ☀️ 40 °C

    Breeder of Akal teke horses, said to be one of the oldest breeds. First are you here pics of the horses, both beautiful and very valuable. Last is the owner of the farm in traditional dress.

    Dunbar Burdt

    Beautiful horse, very different look compared to the horses seen in the US.

    8/5/19Reply
    skip's retirement travel

    They always have their heads held high like that, more than I remember seeing.

    8/5/19Reply
     
  • Day4

    Ashgabat

    July 29, 2019 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ⛅ 32 °C

    Unusual city that is the capital of Turkmenistan. Basically, everything is white, even cars in the city are required to be white. There is no main square where people might go to congregate, just a place for military parades. The buildings are all marble. Virtually all monuments have a statue of the first president. We saw very few people and almost no cars on the road. The first word that came to my mind to describe this place is sterile.
    The first pic is the largest mosque in central Asia, named for the first president. All the wall engravings are in Turkish, not Arabic, and are from the former President's book, not the Koran, both extremely unusual in Islam. Next is the memorial to WW2. Then the world's largest indoor Ferris wheel (really). The next three are memorials:. To the Constitution, to neutrality and to Independence. All around the tower in the last one are statues of people famous in Turkmen history.
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  • Day2

    Gate to Hell

    July 27, 2019 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ⛅ 38 °C

    The Darvasa gas crater, aka the gate of hell, was formed from a failed natural gas well that resulted from groundwater mixed with the gas creating something like a mud geyser that gradually subsided. The plan was to burn off the gas, figuring a few weeks. 40 some years later, it is still burning, albeit less vigorously now.
    The pics are of the crater at night and during the day. The last is of the Karakorum Desert where this is located.
    Maybe it's just me, but it seems interesting that a preacher would be at the gate of hell on his birthday
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  • Day1

    Kunye Urgench, Turkmenistan

    July 26, 2019 in Turkmenistan ⋅ ☀️ 41 °C

    Ancient capital of the Korezm empire before destruction first by Genghis Khan and then by Tamerlane. Also, the river changed its course resulting in water shortages. So the capital was moved to Khiva.
    The remains are a UNESCO site. First is the caravansarai gate. Second and third are mausoleums from before the Genghisid destruction. Then a minaret from in between the two major destructions. It has survived earthquakes because it has anti-seismic engineering in the form of layers of clay mixed with straw throughout the structure. The last two are of a mausoleum from after the Timurid destruction. Most of what you see is original from the 14th century.
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