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Archive for June, 2011

A few hundred years old minaret in the old city of Khiva.

Here are some shots from my last year’s Central Asia trip, on the magically medieval-looking ancient towns in Uzbekistan. If you stare hard enough, you might just spot flying carpet among the minarets 🙂

Samarkand, Bukhara, Khiva – these names invoke images of the 1001 Arabian Night in my mind. Islamic architecture is one of the wonders in these ancient towns, but after visiting a few of these historical cities, I regretted to have sticking to the well-trodden famous cities tour route, they all somehow look and feel rather alike – welcome to the reconstructed glory cities, in a film-set mode….

Uzbek traditional hats hanging for sale on the old city wall of Khiva.

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看病难

过去几个月,我进进出出北京的医院多次,并不是住院或接受复杂的治疗,只不过是定期验血检查,测量我的内分泌失调是否逐渐恢复正常,以及挂个普通面诊号,见见医生听取检查报告分析然后取药。

这个流程看起来挺简单的,不过实施起来总会耗上好多个小时,首先得上午赶早排长队做检查,然后下午下班后再次返回医院拿报告,一天内往返医院两次才能完成。每一次到期得去医院检验时,我总是很拖沓,曾经还试过逾期两个月才回去复诊,纯粹因为我实在很讨厌去医院。

我初期去医院时,经常会搞得暴躁指数飙升,面红耳赤,怒发冲冠,忍不住想找人理论,甚至还会萌生想揍人的念头。 (more…)

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Look ‘round thee now on Samarcand, is she not queen of earth? Her pride above all cities? In her hand their destinies?

With all beside of glory, which the world hath known? Stands she not proudly and alone? And who her sov’reign?

Timur he Whom th’ astonish’d earth hath seen…..The Zinghis’ yet re-echoing fame. **(中文大意翻译见下

Tamerlane —— Edgar Allan Poe

乌国的新人们到帖木儿的塑像前拍结婚照。

在他的诗篇里,19世纪的美国作家Edgar Allan Poe把一个历史上被称为嗜血暴君的Amir Timur(帖木儿,1336-1405),化身为一个因爱情而终生遗憾的君主。帖木儿一生东征西讨,领土西至土耳其,北至俄罗斯,东至印度。Samarkand (撒马尔罕)作为帖木儿帝国的首都,被粉饰得金碧辉煌,商业繁华并凝聚了一批文艺人和工匠。

然而,在近三千字的诗篇Tamerlane里,结尾来了一句Despair, A kingdom for a broken heart,传说这话是帖木儿在病床上临终前,透露出埋藏在心头多年的痛,因年少时为了追求权势和权贵联姻,抛弃了平民出身的爱人,一个帝国换来了一生心碎。

但讽刺的是,当年违心进行政治婚姻的帖木儿,今时今日,坐落在其出生地Shakhrisabz (赫里夏勃兹)的帖木儿塑像,却是当地乌兹别克斯坦新人们结婚时,必定要去“朝圣”并拍摄结婚照的最佳选点。 (more…)

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