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Three visits and one stopover in Taraz Talas, Kyrgyzstan

Aelita's hometown.

During my stint with ACCELS, Aelita and I made three visits to Talas. We scheduled a third one to allow more students from the Talas Oblast to participate in the program.

My assistant is also from Talas, so her mother invited my driver and me to her apartment. Since my assistant's sister lived in Talas, her mother would send some food and vegetables to the driver. I enjoyed the Talas trip since I got to stopover in Taraz a couple of times and Karatau on a couple trips.

Kyrgyz Alatoo - Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
Kazakhstan is on the other side of the mountains.
We are heading to Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
We are heading to Talas.
Kyrgyz horses and the Alatoo Mountains - Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
I need to remember to call these the Alatoo Mountains, not Alatau as in Kazakhstan. Ala is a rusty brown color. It is not named for Allah as many foreigners think.
Kyrgyz Mercedes - Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
The Kyrgyz Mercedes back in 1999. We saw a lot of them on the Talas side of Kyrgyzstan. Talas was cut off from the country by a highway that went only through Kazakhstan. Hence it took forever for goods to reach this side of the country in the late 90s.
Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
The Kyrgyz Alatoo.
Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
Famous Kyrgyz Warrior.
Aelita, her mother, and my driver - Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
Aelita's sister and brother-in-law lived in Bishkek. Each trip, her mother would send vegetables and food back to Bishkek.
Kirov Dam - Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
Kirov Dam.
Kirov Dam - Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
Kirov Dam.
Kirov Dam - Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
The famous Talas River is below the Kirov Dam. The famous Battle of Talas in 751 took place nearby. The Arabs defeated the Chinese in this battle.
Third visit to Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
On this trip, I got hurt after falling on snow-covered marble stairs at the hotel in Talas. It took me several months to fully recover.
Winter in Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
The driver did not expect it to snow on this trip.
The school where we held the exams and interviews - Talas, Kyrgyzstan.
The photo of this school is one of my fondest moments in Talas.

Reflection

I wish I never got hurt on the final trip to Talas. I should have told Aelita and her mother that I got hurt. That trip set the tone for the working relationship I had with Aelita at the time.