Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Of Uzbekistan: Graduation

This picture is from the top of the remains of a centuries-old castle in Shahrisabz, Uzbekistan. Shahrisabz was home to Tamerlane, the Uzbeks' great conqueror and now national hero. Which is sort of like declaring Attila the Hun your national hero, under the philosophy: "He may have been a cruel tyrant, but he was our cruel tyrant." In any case, Tamerlane built an amazing palace in Shahrisabz, parts of which still stand and are amazing.

The day we were there turned out to be the last day of school for the students of Shahrisabz Unified School District. It seemed that thousands of them descended on the park surrounding the ancient palace for a modest carnival and the possibility of climbing to the top of the tower, and if not, enjoying the biggest graduation party in town down at ground level. To the best of our reckoning, the new graduates all wore sashes to mark their accomplishments. Many of the young women, graduates or not, were dressed as pictured above, poofy pony-tail holders and all, as apparently is the fashion in Shahrisabz these days.

1 comment:

Bernard Yin said...

I am blown away by this photo. Great document. Looks like you have caught great moments in a great variety of places.