Challenging Kazakhstan’s Mountains

Our Internet is still down at home and so when I don’t have anything to write I usually put up photos. Can’t do that today since I’m tapping this blog entry at work and all my photos showing off Kazakhstan are back at my flat on my home computer.

Busy is my day today with preparing for classes as it is soon nearing the end of the first summer session.  Also, I’m getting ready for a conference to present at this weekend.  Much to do and NO time to complain about it so the next best thing is put in a poem I got from Streams in the Desert about mountains.  I looked out this morning when I awoke and our mountain view looked glorious with white puffy clouds and some changes in the color with the shadows in the mountains.  Time for a picture, I thought to myself.  When I looked five minutes later, it was not worthy of a photo.  Kind of like sunrises or sunsets, you HAVE to take the photos that very second, otherwise, if you delay too long the moment has passed, the glory has gone.

There was a scar on yonder mountain-side,
Gashed out where once the cruel storm had trod;
A barren, desolate chasm, reaching wide
Across the soft green sod.

But years crept by beneath the purple pines,
And veiled the scar with grass and moss once more,
And left it fairer now with flowers and vines
Than it had been before.

There was a wound once in a gentle heart,
Whence all life’s sweetness seemed to ebb and die;
And love’s confiding changed to bitter smart,
While slow, sad years went by.

Yet as they passed, unseen an angel stole
And laid a balm of healing on the pain,
Till love grew purer in the heart made whole,
And peace came back again.

I hope to find the article from a Kazakh magazine I just read the other day about some westerners who biked 14 hours across the mountains south into Kyrgyzstan to get to Lake Issykul.  The toughest part was keeping up with their Russian guides who said they couldn’t make it.  Breathing in the high altitude and getting flat tires delayed them a bit too.  But they DID achieve their goal and saw some beautiful mountain views along the way.  Such an extreme sport that maybe these bikers were in too much pain to fully appreciate it.  Usually people hike these mountains and take it in 2-3 days.  I’d like to do that sometime in the future when I’m in much better shape.

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