Sunday, June 3, 2012


On arriving at the gps spot for Marianne's we couldn't see the number we had but after knocking on a few gates we found it tucked away down a driveway with three other properties. On walking in we just were in awe of the beautiful gardens . We met a few people including one of the two receptionists at Dushanbe who introduced us to Marion herself (a fellow Australian) and we had a very long chat over a cold glass of water.
Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug We were shown to our room and relaxed! Yes, we had wifi properly for the first time in five days so caught up on a lot of posts on Facebook all during the stay but firstly had a beautiful shower. We had asked re restaurants and groceries so Marion advised and had also said the driver there to drop us off where we want to go. So we asked him to take us to the cafe recommended on their room sheet called the Grand Dame which was her restaurant also. She had recommended a native one earlier but it closed about nine and we didn't set off for dinner till 8:30 or so.
The driver took us to an ATM first then promptly got pulled over by the police at the lights for jumping the gun. Think he paid money but all we heard was arguing between the two of them then when he got back in he said "mafia" (he couldn't speak English).
We had a lovely comfort food meal as everything in English; songs, menu, and style was beautiful. The waiter very helpful. On the way back guess who jumped the lights again. And yes another pull over :)
The next night we decided to walk ourselves to the local cafes as Craig had seen some on a walk he had taken earlier. We also visited a grocery shop but bought stuff on the way home.
Outside the supermarket there we met .Alyovar who was supervising a painter, Rafael, who was painting the garden seats. He knew quite a bit of English and after a long chat he gave us his email details and we our details. He already has two friends in Australia who email him to help his English.
On the Monday morning we met Zulfiya, the other receptionist, and had some good chats. She organized another sim card as we had hacked at the one Farida had got for us. It took a long time so we didn't get away til 12 or so. Ps the breakfasts were superb! Oh and we met Daniella from Switzerland who was in the breakfast room the first day and the second, firstly looking for somewhere to stay and using the internet to find accommodation (she found Marion's full ) and the second day picking up her excess gear she had left there. She had been in Nepal and said she may see us in Khorog.(alas we did not catch up there).
Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug Oh and they did all our laundry there too! Included in the price.
We set off and were treated to some stunning scenery!! On the top of the mountain was a few food stalls and we stopped. Our first sight was a man giving a lamb to a man on a horse. Then we walked over and bought some stew of pulses which was very tasty but also had a couple of chunks of grisselly meat which we queried and were answered by a finger pointed to sheep nearby being herded up a nearby mountain.. It wasn't too bad. We also had coffee which was thick and sweet and hit the spot.
At the table next to us were an older lady two others and a five year old cute girl. I had already smiled and said hello and asked how old she was.
When we asked for the price of the coffee the stall owner replied three fingers and the lady shook her head and smiled. I said, "not that much usually ?" She didn't know English but held up two fingers and smiled. I smiled and shrugged and motioned doesn't matter :)
The ladies then left and two boys sat there. We asked if they spoke English and one did. He answered our question what the cold drink was in the little brown bottles everywhere as tea or choi as they refer to it. So their version of iced tea :)
We went to go and the guys in the chicory stall called us over and let us have a taste. The boy showed how to peel it first. We said our goodbyes and gave him an Australia keyring for translating for us. :)


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