Shakedown Street

“In Kyrgyzstan, it’s the ones in the uniforms who are crooks.” – Brit in a Bishkek Hostel   Inside, the bus station was dark and seemingly dead. The official ticketing windows were all closed. We poked around for a minute, and then quickly made our way to the door. But before we reached, a diminutive …

Continue reading ‘Shakedown Street’ »

Faces of Bishkek

Here’s another in Galen’s now famous Faces series, with the faces of people we saw in Bishkek:        


The difference between Bishkek and Osh are a study in the divide that bifurcates Kyrgyzstan. Osh is old, poor, Kyrgyz and pockmarked by its own history. Bishkek is young, wealthier and thoroughly Russian. We had been sweating in the ancient city, climbing up Sulayman Mountain. Osh is located in the hot, fertile Fergana valley, a …

Continue reading ‘Bishkek’ »

Osh to Bishkek

Osh and Bishkek are the two largest cities in Kyrgyzstan and they connect the country’s two regions, North and South, yet they do not have any bus connecting them. The journey is only four hundred miles, but roads, summiting the passes of the Tienshan Mountains, are far too rough for any sort of poor Soviet …

Continue reading ‘Osh to Bishkek’ »