09-13 Day 65 (Tamga, rest day)

Connecting to people that have come before


Travel FromTamga, Kyrgyzstan
Intermediate Locationwww.Askarandtamara.com (Guest House)
Ending LocationTamga, Kyrgyzstan
Starting Odometer32,931
Ending Odometer32,937
Miles Driven Today6 Miles
Total Trip Mileage8394 Miles
Countries visited Today 
Countries visited on trip US, Canada, UK, The Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium, Luxembourg, Finland, Estonia, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan


Today started out with me spending some time having a great breakfast and Blogging, so that I am once again, caught up.


After returning from the guest house, I spent the afternoon testing the Drone, as we expect to get some great video footage tomorrow. The South Beach resort is nice, and comfortable, but because of the surrounding area, it’s not that picturesque from the air. So, I’ve captured some drone footage, but have not decided what to do with it yet. In any case, I’ll have the drone batteries charged up for tomorrow, and the next day.

Noontime visit to Askar and Tamara guest house

Wandering Earl’s Blog…

This morning, in my email was a note from Toni, who said to me that if I’m still in Tamga, I might want to read this other blog, and who knows what will come of it. It turns out that the other blog, and a specific post in that Blog are written by a guy named Derek, who goes by the alias of Wandering Earl.

it seems that in 2014, Derek visited Tamga, and after a series of disappointments, he discovered the Guest House of Askar and Tamara. A local couple, who have built a guest house, with a number of cabins for those that are passing through.

I read Derek’s blog post, and was struck by how this woman had affected him and his life. In his post, I also learned that she did not know much about the Internet, and so the impact she made on him would be largley unknown. That is, until I stopped by to share Derek’s story with her.

The guest house

So, at 12:15, I jumped on the bike, and made the 3 mile ride into town, and found the guest house of Askar and Tamara. The place looked to be closed for the season, but one of the locals saw me trying to get someone’s attention at the front door, and they suggested that I go around the side, and knock on another gate. I did so, and Askar came to the door. I did my best to say that I wanted to see Tamara, and he asked me to have a seat, and to wait for her; He motioned to me that she was eating.

I later learned that Tamara was not eating at the time, but was instead in the shower. In any case, after about 10 minutes, she came out, and I began to tell her the story of Derek’s blog, the story he wrote about her, and how I learned of her earlier this morning, and wanted to come to see her to try to fill her life with a little bit of joy.

Sharing Derek’s story

I told her the story of receiving notice of Derek’s blog, reading the post, and feeling like I needed to meet her, and share as much as possible of what I knew, with her, hoping to bring a smile to her face.

We talked for about 45 minutes, and then I handed her my iPhone, and she spent the next 25 minutes, carefully reading the blog post, and all of the comments. Throughout the entire reading, I could see her emotions welling up, expressing a feeling of being overwhelmed by what Derek had written.

The story of 120 steps

In order to jog her memory, so that she remembered who Derek was, I told her the story of how she had given Derek directions to get to the lake shore, which included looking for a house with a blue roof, taking 120 steps, and then following a path ‘down and around to the right’. She quickly remembered, and flashed a big smile.

Tamara is everything that Derek said. She is educated, intelligent, warm, hard-working, and in love with her native town of Tamga. She told me that her Son and Daughter had offered to have she and Askar move to Bishkek, the capital, but she said that she did not want to live in a box, and that she loved the outdoors of Tamga. I can certainly see why.

The fruit orchard

While I was sitting, and talking with Tamara, I noticed that my blood sugar had started to drop, and I noticed a few fresh pears on the table. I politely asked if I might have one, and Tamara directed me to the backyard, where they have an Orchard of Apple Trees, Pear Trees, Plum Trees. She asked me to try them all, which I did, and they were delicious.

The Internet, Blogs, Websites, and Email

As Derek noted in his blog post, Tamara was not, and is still not much familiar with the internet. But, she asked me to help her get this website on her phone. Her phone is an Android, and configured for Russian. In addition, even if I am able to get Google.com search on a Chrome browser, the results come back in Russian. So, I spent the better part of 30 minutes trying to figure things out. With the help of a young girl who was visiting, we eventually got the Blog onto her phone. I also provided my contact information, and all of the information so that her son and daughter could help her get email running, and also help her write to Derek.

Video, or email?

I thought it would be helpful for Tamara to be able to record a video message to Derek, so that she could acknowledge that she did not forget him, and that she wants to communicate, but in the end, after thinking about it, Tamara decided that she wanted to write an email to Derek. And so, when her children visit, she’ll get it all sorted out, and send Derek a private email, where she can express her feelings.


I am so grateful to Toni for finding this blog, and sending me the link in time that I could take advantage of it. I was able to meet a remarkable woman, with a strong, caring and patient husband, who love tourism, and all of the contact that it affords them. I was the beneficiary, once again, of an unexpected sequence of events, that caused me to have a richer day, and a better life.

Askar and Tamara, who shared some stories, some fruit, and their home with me for a few hours. If you are ever in Tamga, Kyrgyzstan, please consider stopping by, and saying hello, or maybe staying overnight in one of their brand new rooms, which (by the way) all have a shower, and toilet. Can you say awesome?

As you read this, I hope that all of you can find your own bit of special interaction, where you can impact the lives of others, and let them impact you. It is a remarkable feeling, that fills me with warmth, and much joy. I don’t want to sound too sappy, but to all my friends, go and have yourselves an awesome day. Share the good, and make this Earth just a little bit better, Yes?

Sunset at South Beach

What will tomorrow bring

I’m almost embarrassed to write this part of today’s post. After today’s experience, it’s hard to imagine what will come, but at tonight’s briefing, we learned of what is coming next. it seems that tomorrow, we’ll leave at 8:30, and arrive at a Yurt Manufacturing company, for a 90 minute tour, which is scheduled to start at 10:00. We’ll then make our way to Song Kul, where we’ll stay in Yurt huts overnight.

We’ve been warned that at an elevation of 3200 meters, or almost 10,000 feet of elevation, the temperature will be quite cold, and that we should dress appropriately.

About the Author

Cliff Musante

Cliff Musante is a technologist, business leader, motorcycle enthusiast, father, grandfather, and more. In June, 2013 his passion for motorcycles was revitalized, and he set out to ride across Patagonia. Since then, he's logged thousands of miles, ridden across the US, and on July 10, 2019, he began a 120 day trip through Europe, and then on to Russia, China, and parts East. This 'Blog is the story of all of his adventures.


    1. Yes, Tamara and Askar are smaller folks, and I look like a giant next to them. But comparing their influence in the world, I don’t think I have an advantage at all. These are two mighty big people indeed.

  1. Cliff…hard to believe you’re past the half way point, eh? Amazing journey – in so many respects – and wonderful “coverage.” …and getting a little sappy is ok.

    1. Hey Deeno, yes, I’m almost shocked myself that it’s half over. The good news is that I’ve still got about 6 more weeks of China, Laos and Thailand. So, I can only imagine what China will do to me, and what stories I’ll be presented with. Thanks for the permission for the sappy stuff, I think that it helps to let everyone know how we can, and perhaps should be affected by what we see, and what we experience. Travel is wonderful, and I want to encourage everyone to go out there, and experience it.
      Best to you, and thanks again,

  2. When you get a to Tashkent, Uzbekistan, you might want to try the Sultan Said restaurant. Very good and it has a nice atmosphere.

    1. Hi Mark,
      Sorry, but I have spent my last night in a Stan, for the forseeable future. Kaz, and Kyrg are my two stans. Uzbek is not in the plan for now.

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