Day 10 Tuesday April 30 -Shah-I-Zinda
We visited the Shah-i-Zinda or “place of the living king” today.
It faces modern Samakand. The mauselium remains cool and shady under the afternoon sun during the hot day.
The cemetery opened in the 9th century and is still operating today. The front faces modern Smarkand and toward the back lies the ancient city of Afrosiab. It was once a powerful capital.
We visited a carpet factory in the afternoon. It is a family operation and employs many women. They work in pairs on their looms and make slow progress on their masterpieces. Each silk thread is tied by hand in an ancient process.
There is a garden here where some of the vegetable dyes come from. They grow indigo, coleus and dahlias here.
One could argue that the pay is nominal but the cost of living is different here and we must remember that. Visitors from foreign countries have little knowledge or understanding of the economic and social factors at work here.
We made an offer on a fabulous, one of a kind rug. It was kindly considered, but not close enough to the selling price to close the deal. It is a wonderful piece of art that took three years to complete. The colors and design were intricate and beautiful.
We also went to the Afrosiab History museum. The Russians did an an archeological dig here in the 1800’s.
Many pieces of pottery and tile were found in among the excavated walls of the town.
We then went to a dance recital and viewed some talented girls from 5 to 13 years of age dance in their Uzbeck costumes. It was very entertaining and we congratulate them all on a job well done.
I will endeavor to put one of these pages up every day until I finish. I am still under the spell of Central Asian time. I am slowly returning to my own world, but reluctantly.
Read my historical and interesting novel, The Adventures if the Smith Family.
It follows the life of a young man who dreams of a different life and how it comes to pass.