The way to Bukhara was smoother than the one we took to Moynaq, maybe because we opted out from any shortcut and took the main road instead. Even if was almost 100 km longer, at least it was decently paved and allowed us to keep an higher average speed. Just before entering Bukhara we heard a familiar noise coming from the back of our car. Yes, you guesses it, the silencer again. The fourth time now. This time we didn’t lose it completely, but realizing that we would we stopped at the first work shed that we saw entering the city. Silencer welded back together and hit the road again.
The only thing that I will mention about Bukhara is a very interesting encounter with a blacksmith, who had a shop in the old town. Scissors and knives were exposed and perfectly ordered outside of the shop, while the young man came to me and trying to close a sale. I do admit that I love blades of any kind, but I was more interested in knowing how they were crafted than actually buying any of them. So I pulled out my camera and asked if I could film him while asking him questions about his job. He was so kind to accept to show live for my camera the making of a bird shaped scissor (or at least part of the process). After he took me to the main shed were his father and uncle were forging knives and explain the whole process of the job. He admitted that he was still a student of his father and he was not yet crafting knives because they require a lot of experience to be made properly. A very interesting morning.
The next stop was Samarkand and the feeling that I had was that the city is way too much “westernized”, like I felt in Khiva. I am not a big fun of monuments and the likes, I prefer the human side of whatever place I visit. One funny thing that happened in Samarkand was to bump into a wedding. We heard from far away the noise of the music and lots of voices singing, so we followed the source of the sound and found a very colorful celebration with at least 400 people invited. The marrying couple came on a black car and sat inside for few minutes outside of the restaurant. We asked a few questions and got to know that they were in their early twenties. As we started to take pictures and videos of anything we could catch with our cameras, we crossed the entrance to the garden and followed the couple to the stage where they finally sat. In front of them, a group of six female dancers opened the party while a band played on a second stage. I am not exaggerating when I say that we were stinking from 3 days of no-shower and dressed almost like homeless, but despite of this we were invited to take place to a table for dinner. Flattered as we were, we thanked and walked off with a little bit of shame.
The next day we drove to Boyson, our last destination before we left Uzbekistan. We departed from Samarkand right after lunch, and what a lunch! We tried some meat skewers known with the name of Shashlik. There are many variants of it, but all of them include some sort of meat, whether lamb or beef or chicken. The ones we tried are sooo good that they make me feel hungry every time I think about it. Little pieces of beef tender meat mixed with lamb fat taken from the ribs. A mix of taste that left our stomach filled and our palates satisfied. And probably the real reason that would ever make me want to go back to Samarkand.