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Update: Mon 23:05

A quick prattle.


Who would have believed it? I certainly wouldn't. The consignment is in Almaty already and has been since 14:10 today (in some timezone not made clear by DHL)! Blinky blimey!

Admittedly it listed as "Clearance delay" which hardly sounds promising but at least it's in Almaty. Hurray!

Tomorrow is a charge up the road (over an International border but we all do that most days, don't we?) and see what can be done.


Whilst wittering about pneumatic drills last night (they're still going tonight, perhaps they're a foot further down) I didn't mention the oversized flag and flag pole next to it and the two perspex "cases" beside it. The cases are open on two and a half sides as otherwise the two poor saps standing guard there all day would surely perish. It's uncomfortable enough standing there watching them (to see if they blink etc.) but to be stood at attention, effectively in the sun with perspex on two sides must be, um, difficult.


This morning started with thunder and rain. Actually it started with a party of ten FR who arrived at 6:30 and yakked for a while (merci!) followed by one of the staff knocking on my door at 7:30 with "What time you want breakfast?"

Later in the day she followed that up with "Why you no go your country?" A very good question indeed.

Anyway, the point was it actually rained this morning together with some long rumbles of thunder (though like the Issyk-kul experience, almost no lightning -- how does that work?). The net effect of this was to lower the temperature by two degrees below the night-time minimum to 25C. Very welcome.

The sun came out in the afternoon and I guess it went back to the normal afternoon's 31C. Only a 4C drop between day and night!

Nationwide Charges

Those beggars at Nationwide are charging me through the wazoo! I'd read that they would no longer absorb commission charges for foreign banks that charged commision but I, by chance, found that the KICB claimed to charge no commission for foreign issued VISA cards.

Nationwide are generously taking 2% plus GBP1 per withdrawal.


Morrisons Bags

One anomalous things is the proliferation of Morrisons bags in Kyrgyzstan. I'm pretty sure this is not some mistake on my part as the logo looks right (a squarish heavy black font on a yellow background). It's not like there's a lot of Morrisons stores on the High Street. Odd.

Negation of Polite Question

In the Russian course the woman (slap!) pointed out that to make a question polite you negate it like you do in English. We do? Yes, we do: "Could you tell me the way to the station?" becomes "You couldn't tell me ...?" Exactly the same in Russian. I don't know whether the oddness of this is orthoganal to the oddness of Morrisons bags in Kyrgyzstan. Both odd, though.


Back to Steinbrau today for the beer. It makes a pleasant change to Baltic No7 or Siberski Crown although I remain unable to distinguish between their offerings. Whatever you think of the beer you can't complain that Steinbrau are going to leave their customers with busted guts on the food front. I was almost tempted to each some of the ketchup simply for the calorific value.

I understand there's a German beer outfit in Almaty too. Some investigation is required!

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