The guesthouse now sports a giant neon sign over the door—quite a bit easier to find than the unmarked alley door of years back.
Ulug showed me to my room, where I unpacked and readied for a much needed after-the-train shower. Before I hopped in, he knocked and announced breakfast was ready. I threw water on my face and went up to the dining area to breakfast with him. Soon Mariam, his mother, came and joined us. Miriam! She sweetly announced that when she approached us, she thought “Is that Anechka sitting there? Who is that? That can’t be Anechka. She looks like one of us.” Especially sweet, as I don’t look a bit Tajik. We sat and chatted and oh how I wish this family were not so damn far away. That Bukhara was not so damn far away.
After breakfast I managed a shower before Ulug and I met in the lobby, where we waited for his little sister, Bonu to join us. Slightly tired but wanting Bukhara, I sat with my camera and its manual, still figuring out the thing exposes. I’d yet to take a photo on this trip with it. Thus far I used only the S60 point & shoot. Ulugbek grabbed my camera and took the first pic of the trip: Me on the couch waiting for Bonu, D70 manual in hand. Though not evident here, the resolution is amazing. The close up of my feet is from this shot. I’ll spare you the close-up of sweat trickling off my nose:
I took the next:
Mariam, Ulugbek’s beautiful mother, opening her present
We decided to wait on Bonu at the restaurant by the Lyabi Haus pool in Bukhara’s center, after which their guesthouse is named. It’s only steps away. I was anxious to see Rustam, my favorite waiter, so Ulug & I went over and had a beer. Rustam is well. He’s married now and has a newborn baby girl.
Bonu showed shortly after we arrived and I used the time to practice exposure while Ulug pried open the case to my polarizing filter.
lazing about around the lyabi haus pool