open air museums

From nukus we traveled by mashrutka and shared taxis and an empty tour bus (that gave us a lift for a few dollars, making us the only travelers on 45 seats) through the kyzylkum desert first to khiva and than to bukhara – both cities are unesco sites with awesome ancient to 19th century architecture. still the people living around these sites are not yet completely overpowered by tourism. they still seem to live their lives in a regular way. a lot of people try to get into conversations, and amazingly, the conversations do not necessarily turn into sales pitches right away.
there are always questions about austria and about our travels. asking back about the travels of the local people we found, that still they don’t get out from where they live. a young student we talked to, who was extremely interested in european music and clubs, after a long chat about comparing western europe to central asia, told us that his only travels so far led him to tashkent and to the local mountains. his subject in university: tourism. we met him in his last week in bukhara, he was about to leave for work to moscow, i hope for him the landing there will not be too rough.