Christopher Pratt (cpratt) wrote,
Christopher Pratt
cpratt

Hayastan, here we come... well, maybe...

On my lunch break today, I started thinking about the Caucasus again as the pipeline from Azerbaijan to Turkey [via Tbilisi, Georgia] opened today. In September 2001, I took a flight to Tbilisi, and was planning on spending three weeks in Georgia and Armenia, but got cold feet and flew home two days later [note to self: when planning trips to countries that are en vias de desarrollo, do NOT go by yourself and stay in inexpensive Soviet hotels complete with dezhurnaya: it WILL freak you right the fuck out]. However, the 48 hours I did spend in Georgia were pretty amazing: the food was like nothing I've ever had before [same goes for the resulting diarrhea], the countryside is spectacular, and the architecture blew me away. As a result, I've been itching to go back ever since.

Today, I found out that there is actually one good, low cost flight a week from Seattle to Yerevan: it's via Amsterdam, and connects on a relatively not-scary Armenian airline [I've flown Moldavian Airlines, so I figure Armavia can't be any worse].

So, it looks like I might yet get to go back to the Caucasus. Easy, affordable flights from Seattle... improved political situation... better quality hotels... more time to research...

Bonus Armenia titbit: When I applied for a visa back in 2001, it arrived in the form of a traditional, elaborate visa glued into my passport, complete with raised seal. However, the consulate got the entry date wrong, so I sent it back - and they returned it with the correct dates written on top of some large blobs of Liquid Paper. These days, though, I'm delighted to see that Armenia was the second nation in the world to go over to an e-visa system [Australia was the first - their ETAs have been around for years]. Rock on!
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