03 February 2011

Tokmok Life

I'm starting to get the hang of getting around Tokmok a little better.  It should have happened sooner, but I don't have a great sense of direction without a map, and there are no maps of Tokmok (I spent a long time staring at Google maps trying to figure out where I live) and I was stuck at home for the first ten 10 days with burned-foot boy.  But this week I've gotten out to explore.  Or at least to find food. 

The egg store in the bazaar is getting to know us.  Today they asked where my youngest son was, since I was there with my middle son.  And she gave me a good deal on the eggs.  Fine with me, especially since we're happy with their eggs. I'm also starting to get a feel for the people I like to buy produce from.  And I love buying laghman in the bazaar.   

The electricity has been completely reliable since we've been here, and the gas has been nearly so.  It's just cut out a few times, and only just long enough that I have to relight the stove.  That become obvious quickly.  The water's a little spottier and has been off for as long as 4 hours in the afternoon, but since we have a bucket in the kitchen instead of a sink, it's never been a problem.  Sometimes it's off at night too, but I've never stayed up to pay attention it its nighttime track record.

We had high hopes of getting wifi at home, but found out today that there aren't any available ports in the city.  So we're stuck paying per megabyte, and that's as expensive for us as the wifi would be.  Maybe something will come up soon, because my youngest is ready to Skype with his grandma.


  1. In Aktobe (Aktubinsk) water supplies were quite unreliable. Sometimes there was no water, sometimes only hot water, sometimes only cold water. Whenever I would get to my apartment (I mostly lived in the countryside with no running water at all) if there was hot water I would take a bath regardless of time or schedule just because I couldn't be sure that I would have a chance to do it again before having to go back to the field. It always worked in the end. To these days I find it weird to travel without a bucket to save water.

  2. I remember in Bishkek that the cold water would be off sometimes. Having only hot water was almost as bad as no water at all, since it was so hot. And the hot water was off for a month in the summer. But there nearly always was water.

    I'm mostly just glad there is reasonably reliable running water in the house, and that it's not off at really bad times. They always seem to get it back on for dinner.

    And yes, we have buckets stashed all over now.