We feel extremely lucky to have met a wonderful family that lives just one building over from us. They have been so generous and helpful, from helping find a school for the boys to inviting us over to their house to taking us out to do fun things on the weekends. When I was sick, Anara even brought over a pot of hot, fresh soup! Everyone needs a neighbor like that.
They have a son who is almost three, so Misha and Sebby have someone else to run, play, and fight with. Alihan is learning English words from Misha (like "peanut butter and bread") and of course my little boys are picking up Russian (and Kyrgyz!) from him. (Misha can expertly say "Eta moyo!" to be sure Alihan knows "that's mine!" Ah yes, the essential phrases of children.)
One weekend in October, Turat and Anara invited us to Hawii (or "Gawaii" as its pronounced in Russian), a spacious park and restaurant area about an hour drive from Bishkek, on the road to Lake Issikul going East. During a pit-stop, we had to take advantage of this great photo opp in front of the golden trees.
When we arrived, we admired the wide open, green spaces, animal statues, bridges, and swings before heading to the lake. A large dock extending over the lake lets customers eat right on the water while watching the swans and fish.
Our table bordered the water, so the kids could all throw bread crumbs to the alarmingly huge and greedy fish below. The swans and ducks also came over for a taste. Meanwhile, we enjoyed delicious duck shashlik, manti, and gan fan, with hot tea to drink.
Alihan decides he needs a nibble of bread too.
Watching the swans. The little island gazebos were also available for customers for an extra fee. A motor boat transported the hungry families - and their food!
Also on the grounds were these caged falcons
and even squirrels. We love the long-eared squirrles in Kyrgyzstan! I have taken many photos of them running around the parks.
The fountain was a big hit with the kids.
Sebby yodels away, content to sit and watch the fountain for an eternity.
Anara and Turat with little Alihan.
Marching on walls and jumping off - another captivating activity.
By the time we got home again that night, it was time to put the kids to bed. A perfect day!