Archive for September 14, 2010

Another photo taken from our west window

Yesterday I showed a photo that I took the other night of a beautiful sunset. Today I’ll show what it is like to have one’s car towed in new Astana, this was taken from our fourth floor flat looking west.  We don’t have a car which is just as well because it would be an extra headache we don’t need.  Ken used to “own” a Niva four wheel drive truck back in 1993-1995.  He let me drive it once on the open highway so I can say that I’ve driven in Central Asia for about a half mile.

The public transport in Astana works just fine for now, though some of these drivers could learn to be less jerky when they swing into the bus stops. Also, I don’t look forward to the wicked winter weather and standing out in the frigid cold waiting for a bus.  Where my new office is with my job, it is halfway to the airport about 3 miles from our flat.  In this nice fall weather I may just walk this distance to see how long it takes me.

Back to my photo, I had never seen such a sophisticated way to tow an errant vehicle.  What they did, with police swarming around the scene, was put something under each wheel and then hoisted it up and pivoted it to the truck’s flatbed.  Not long after I saw the same tow truck drive by without the car on it so I suspect that they “gently” placed the car somewhere else a block or two down.  You see, there was a crane digging up the pipe construction workers had laid last spring. I don’t recall seeing any postings saying “No parking” on such and such a day.  I’m thinking that the pipe layers hadn’t planned ahead and so this Mercedes probably got off okay.  Imagine though coming to where you THOUGHT you parked your car and not finding it there.  Thus, the police were present and I’m sure once the owner returned, they asked for a sum of money to tell him where the car was located.

I’m including some other funky photos that I took recently in our neighborhood.  Notice that camels and horses are BIG here in Kazakhstan.

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