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It’s been a whirlwind of exciting activities the past few days, more than I could ever hope to write at the moment while I’m experiencing it. My journeys through Istanbul yesterday, and Tajikistan today, have been very informative on both a cultural and linguistic sense. I saw the Hagia Sofia and the Blue Mosque, Sultanahmet, as well as the Grand Bazaar, named Kapliçarşi – or as we would say it, Kaplicharshi. I even had a few minutes to dangle my feet in the Mediterranean Sea before going back to the airport to catch my night flight to Tajikistan.

When I arrived at 3:20 in the morning, there were some difficulties with figuring out what do or where to go in the small airport (in which their was a severe derth in English-speaking employees, but no matter) but my host, Malik, showed up just in time to present the official invitation paper to me. After my late nap into this morning (I didn’t go to bed until 5 or so), Farah, Malik, and I drove around Dushanbe and they showed me the sites and museums in the city, and I went to a party at the American embassy for a concert. Malik works there as an NGO contract supervisor, and I enjoyed meeting his colleagues.

I don’t know what the entire plan is for tomorrow, but I know it will involve checking out one of the forest parks in the lower mountains outside of the city, and Malik is having me get up early. The extra +2 time zone change here puts me 10 hours ahead of Wisconsin, and hopefully it won’t take more than today for my internal clock to adjust to the change.