Day 90: Bowel movement stories
Kulyab Travel Blog› entry 127 of 260 › view all entries
Thanks to the people I met here and/or travelled with: Tim & Wim (Belgium)
One of the differences between meeting travellers on the road and meeting people in real life is that when you meet travellers in a hostel you often discuss your bowel movement within minutes of meeting them. After all, travellers diarrhoea is a common issue that almost every traveller experiences from time to time. Usually on my trips there is one day that I feel worse for wear, and today was that day on this trip.
Fortunately for me, both Wim and Tim also felt very bad today. All three of us had the runs and both Wim and I had thrown up in the morning (and Tim followed suit later in the afternoon). It was definitely something we'd eaten. Or drank. However, there was no knowing what. I didn't trust the water, which had come from a filling station in Samarkand, so we threw the water out and bought new.
Everyone we spoke to in the hostel had the same thing. In fact, everyone we met throughout our trip in Tajikistan had had the runs for at least a few days. So I guess Tajikistan is one of those countries, like Mexico, Egypt or India, where you just can't escape it. Part of the experience so to speak.
It was not an ideal situation to be travelling in, but we decided to leave Dushanbe anyway and see how far we would go. After all, there wasn't much to see in Dushanbe and we all had to be out of Tajikistan in 14 days again (Tim and Wim because their car was only allowed in the country for 15 days, me because my Chinese visa expires on July 20th).
We were heading for Khorog, which lies at the gateway of the Pamir mountains. To get there there are two routes, the summer-only northern route and the all-seasons southern route. We had heard that despite the southern route being a secondary road, it has been upgraded in recent years (and is still being upgraded, as we would later learn, it is scheduled to be finished in 2015).
The road was indeed pretty good. There were some sections where floods and landslides had destroyed the road, or a new section was being built, so some sections were bumpy gravel roads. But on the whole we made fairly decent progress.
Our goal was the town of Kulyab. Or town, compared to the villages we'd seen on the way it seemed a genuine city. You know, one with more than two streets...
When we reached Kulyab we decided to continue for another half hour or so, and then find a good place to camp.
In the end we camped halfway up on the Shurabad pass. We simply parked along the road side, where we had stunning views over the Kulyab valley and the sunset beyond. If we had felt any better this would have been a perfect spot.
With all three our stomachs upset dry rice seemed the best option for dinner. After dinner we went straight to bed. Nice and snug with three guys in a double bed in a camper van...