A fairytale Uzbek city on the Silk Road. Desert earth, an oasis, chalky white city walls, minarets, and turquoise tiles. Fruits and spices – sophistication and adventure. A journey into Central Asia.
“Cottonfields, the arid earth brought to life with irrigation canals. Dry and crumbling city walls. Minarets and madrassas, peaceful inner courtyards.
The trickle of water in fountains. Deserted alleys, white houses with pale blue doors, bleached by the sun and heat. Dust in the narrow streets. Children laughing, playing in the shade.
A kaleidoscope of faces: Uzbek, Tajik, Turkic, Persian, Chinese, Mongol, Russian, Evidence of a melting-pot culture – this is no backwater. A chalk-pale city, clay and brick houses whitewashed to guard against the sun.
A thousand shrines, and turquoise tiles. Old Soviet books being sold alongside silks and spices and the traditional karakul fur (think Astrakhan hats and coats). Private patios, vines overhead. Mulberry trees.
The pleasures of the table – apricots, pears, and the local specialty – called ‘shurdanak’ - roasted and salted apricot seeds. Cucumbers and carrots in the markets. A convivial, open city of artisans and workshops. A feeling of the vastness of Central Asia, the endless horizons of Uzbekistan, this double-landlocked country. And a sense of the desert beyond the city, and the promise of adventure.
Top Notes: Caraway, pear, coriander, bergamot
Middle Notes: Orris, clove, apricot, jasmine
Base Notes: Benzoin resin, saffron, amber, musk