Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Riding a bicycle to Baku

I remember seeing a guy riding a bike toward Baku, as we were nearing Ganca, the second largest city in Baku. We were finishing a long & extremely monotonous stretch of road in January. And there was this guy with his bulging panniers stuffed - riding alone down this very poor stretch of road.

My first impression was surprise. My second impulse was sympathy. But - I have to assume he did his research and knew what he was getting into.

The Telegraph is running a series of articles about the newspaper's correspondent, Douglas Whitehead, bicycling through Europe. One of his latest articles details his experience on the road to Baku. I've bicycled my share and I've traveled around Azerbaijan too. His impressions ring true to me. I easily can imagine the scenes he describes - the honesty of the people and the cultural differences about personal space and boundaries, the simultaneous hospitality and awkwardness.



When I was in Saatly district - it is a small land between Kur and Araz rivers where Azeris and Meskhetian Turks reside side by side - I was surprised by the lifestyle of these [separate!] groups. Local Azeris traveled horseback and on donkeys, while local Turks (even middle-aged) were riding bicycles.

When I told this observation of mine to a Turk, he said "we don't have to feed them or to buy petrol, thus it is most efficient and practical way of transportation here."

Thus, I was surprised that how local Azeris don't get this simple truth. It seems to be clever you have to be continuously exiled and exiled (like Jews and Meskhetian Turks).

Anonymous said...

Really trustworthy blog. Please keep updating with great posts like this one. I have booked marked your site and am about to email it

to a few friends of mine that I know would enjoy reading..
sesli sohbet
sesli chat
sesli site
görünlütü sohbet
görüntülü chat
kameralı sohbet
kameralı chat
sesli sohbet siteleri
sesli chat siteleri
görüntülü sohbet siteleri
görüntülü chat siteleri
kameralı sohbet siteleri
canlı sohbet
sesli muhabbet
görüntülü muhabbet
kameralı muhabbet
sesli sex

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing a nice article.