“Don’t go!” was the advice when I told my friends about my trip to Kyrgyzstan in late September and early October 2014. I appreciated their suggestion but at the same time I also wanted to take the adventure. I decided to go to Kyrgyzstan, a far away land, which I have never heard before.
I was stopped at the Phnom Penh International airport when checked in. They asked me many questions. They even said how come you go there since there is no a single Cambodian been there before. A third male staff was called to assist. After reading my support papers, they decided to let me go.
In the plane, I sat next to two Cambodians, a man and a woman, similar to my age. They asked me where I am going. I was kind of “Oh, you don’t know the country that I will be landing! It is such a very far country! That even caused them more curiosity. Then I just told them that I am going to Central Asia. Immediately, they said they are going to Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. I almost jumped with joy. I can’t hide my delighted feeling. I thought of how lucky I was to have Cambodians accompanied me all the way to the country that now we three Cambodians never heard of before.
Three planes, two transits and lot of time waiting for our visa application processed, we finally landed safely in Bishkek, the city of post Soviet Union. There were Russian language all the way which I can’t understand a single word. I made about almost an hour for applying for visa upon arrival.
I was worried that my taxi driver would leave the airport after waiting for me for too long. However, what I could see was a middle age man who was not really impressed, sat on a chair, and carried a paper which my name was written on it. To my delighted again, I came to him politely explained why I was late with an expectation that he could understand me. Then, he said “ME NO ENGLISH”. We laughed. I completely understood.
On the way, though we could not communicate, we still talked anyway. We laughed whenever we finally realized that our universal language could not reach a mutual deal. He was such a lovely man. The most importantly, I was transferred safely from the Bishkek’s Manas airport to Ak Keme hotel at 8:30pm.
Below are some photos of Bishkek.