July 2107

Before arriving, I didn't know too much about Kyrgyz culture, but from what I experienced, it was pretty different from anything I've ever come across. And I mean that in a really good and interesting way. Personally, it was so interesting and be a part of, and I mean this about everything from the old ladies selling fermented horse milk of the street corners of Bishkek to the herders living in yurts in the mountains outside of Karakol to all the people who openly offered to take me anywhere or show me around the country.

Alongside Mongolia, it's one of the only countries that still has a prevalent semi-nomadic culture. I saw this most during my time in the Karakol region going on hikes and coming across numerous herders and yurts, but I've also heard it's pretty prevalent in the southern part of the country. Even though it is by choice to live in such a way this day in age, it was still really cool from my standpoint coming across it.

I guess I can sum up my encounter with Kyrgyz culture by saying that it felt a little as if I was taking a step out of time and away from modern industry, which was great after spending the past two years in a big city. People, generally speaking from those I encountered, were so much more open and eager to get to know me than pretty much anywhere else I've ever been to. It was a chance to get to learn and be part of something different than I any place I've lived in before, which was overall a pretty great experience.