After Ganja … into the works of man

The roads out of Ganja were as good as those when we entered. Here it’s the central region of Azerbaijan. Here there are more open fields. Here we discovered a new baijan …
(Azerbaijan … 14.12.04 to 7.01.2005)

This is Mohammad from the town of Aran in the Yevlax district. We’re standing on his land, a few hectares wide where his handful of cows & 150 sheeps & goats graze freely. While in Summer, the land will be transformed into a field of wheat and together with other fruit trees. He has come far to achieve all these. The unrest between his country and Armenia has driven him out of his homeland, around 100km to the south in the district of Karabakh. He showed us a ook of the torments his countrymen have went through, but fortunately for him & his family, they could still lead a peaceful & comfortable life here.

As dusk fell, the sherpards (Mohammad sons) returned with the cows, sheeps & goats. To our surprise, as they opened the gate to the ‘koyun jai’ (sheep’s house), schools of little ones ran out, crying for their mothers … actually for their mother’s milk. A public mass feeding in seesion :)

The family handle their livestocks from head to toes, be it food, shelter, medical & reproduction. Here they are giving them vitamins … hmmm … C or A or E?

The Mohammad workforce altogether, here in their new land, their new home. Keep it up Sir!

This is Qulu, a good friend of another Mohammad (you’ll meet in a while). He has taken us for a tour of Agdas city with his family & to their new house. There they made BBQ for us, after already taking a meal in their old flat. Aaaaa …. I can’t eat anymore ….

This bazar in the city sells everything, local food, herbs, spices, fruits, meat, vegetables and … rice! Long time no see these cute little seeds!

This is man is called Tehran (coincidently, the capital of Iran). He owes this provision shop, situated right in the centre of Laki Town in the Agdas district. Gums for you?

These are men in the wood business. Each cart sells for 6000 manat, slightly more than a US dollar (1 : 5000). Doesn’t looks very profitable to you? However, it means a lot to them, their wife and their children.

This young man is Elssan. He works in the teahouse, a place where men and only men are allowed. They came for tea, chat, a game of cards and of dices. The pots beside Elssan are used for cooking water. Very efficient and practical in a place like this.

This is the Mohammad of Laki town. When we found his house, he was coming from the teahouse at the opposite side. At once he took us in as guests from a foreign land & not long later, informed us that we’ll be attending a wedding! Our 1st Azerbaijan village wedding party! *food-music-dance* Sorry guys, we didn’t bring cameras as all things seemed to happen so fast! We have entered the world of ‘Mohmad-baijan’ For 3 days we stayed with him, little by little listening to the struggles he has overcame to enjoy the life he & his family has at present. With all our hearts, we salute you, Sir!

Mr ‘honeyman’, Fuad. We spotted him with his wagons of honeybees boxes 10m away from the roadside. Had a cup of tea with him, but received a bite on the leg from his ferocious dog. It didn’t like the way SK got too close to the bees while trying to take photos, & broke free from its leash to show us who’s boss. Ouch …

Kurdemir *sigh* … the city which we didn’t find home.We met many foreigners, including a Filipino and Indonesian at their central office. They have been here for a pipeline project, to transport oil through Georgia to Turkey. Sadly, as they were staying within the office compound, they were unable to accomodate us. We had to ride on into the evening sky, until we were called by this man. He owns a roadside restaurant and offered to take us in for the night.

This kindness, regretfully, turned out to bear a hurting outcome. We woke up the next morning to find that our bikes been tempered with. Damages due to improper riding & uninvited writings have been found on our panniers. We couldn’t point out the culprit but suspect those were the foolish acts of our host’s friends (who had stay in other quarters). It was a painful mistake which we only have ourselves to blame. With the lesson in mind, we have to move on … the road lies ahead.

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