Canada, Russia · 9 Days · 71 Moments · August 2017

Philip's adventure in Tuva

18 August 2017

Tuvan Instruments
Our first throat singing group lesson Some amazing sound bites to come !
Great batman boat !

17 August 2017

At the Gala closing of the 2017 threat singing competition

16 August 2017

At the ceremony unveiling of Kongar-Ool Ondar's statue
International Groups throat singing competition Some interesting tunes
New statue to be dedicated this evening toTuva's legendary throat singer Kongar-Ool Ondar
Group threat singing was totally amazing !!!
Met Lemon, One of the producers of the Genghis Blues documentary. The reason so many of us found Tuva !!!! On his 9th trip Thanked him and had nice chat about Tuva since 1995 The good and bad of the new - especially smartphones. He said Tuva is a special place where you bump into people you are seeking, even if days away. A shamanic culture. He said things don't happen the way you plan but they happen - We had that experience with Anna our tour guide. She found and herded all 16 of us in minutes out Of a giant market with thousands of people. I had that experience with him. Patrick told us about meeting him yesterday and I thought it would be great to meet him. And there he was standing in the hallway when I decided to turn back from the group and buy the Solar Deer jew's harp in the store... I have a recording of part of the conversation Interesting !!!
Tuvan Bee Gees by the looks !

15 August 2017

Walking back along the boardwalk past the statues Amazing setting and public space
International competition threat singing in modern music context A very interesting guy from a Norway fiord, a couple from US and Vietnam, twirling dervishes from Turkey, a Canadian group and more Certainly a twist to use throat singing in modern songs Some like it some don't, but it does open eyes to a larger audience
My brother ....
At the throat singing festival in Tuva And the announcer spoke only in Tuvan so we couldn't understand a word then suddenly "Facebook" First hand that It has reached the remotest parts of the world
Ouroboros - a sting cultural symbol here
Some Local beer
More fun to watch than you would think Being there there is a great crowd vibe Simple rules - get the other guy on the ground Multiple pairs on the field at the same time Can easily switch to watch the action from on pair to another
Off to the traditional wrestling competition called Kooresh
Cafe yurt. Translate the sign Yurt
Packed room !!! Very attentive audience
Festival posters
Attended the solo traditional throat singing competition We saw about a dozen of the 90+ competitors Amazing variety of sounds from voices to instruments and all in their traditional clothing I will upload excerpts to Facebook after the trip
Here are those horse heads again on the cultural building as well as on the program The instrument on the building is an Igyl A traditional stringed instrument with 2 strings played with a bow
Knowing the Russians alphabet alone makes a big difference understanding what's going on Many simple phonetic translations point the way

14 August 2017

Beautiful threat singing festival opening.ceremony Outdoors Procession, dancing, traditional throat singing and international groups - many countries including Canada !
Centre of Asia
Our host did find a local grocery store who sold us foreigners some under the table vodka Neat centre of Asia leverage on bottle top
The liquor store is closed for the full 3 day festival Pretty smart idea Great atmosphere shows it doesn't need the booze
Inside Tuvan yurts Yup bear fur shawl
Enjoying the time
One of the regions has a teepee as their yurt They invited us in to share their culture Reindeers used as pack animals From hoof shakers to bear fur shawls Birch bark covered with deer hide
The everpresent horse head From outdoor carvings to instruments
Ryan, one of the photographers in our group is doing a unique and special give back by taking polaroids of people and giving it to them. Amazing to see the reaction of people who probably don't have pictures of themselves to see the photo develop in front of their eyes A truly special gift
Competition for the best yurt - from all 17 regions of Tuva
There were horse saddle competitions
Horses go deep in the culture Of Tuva - every year they have festival that includes hose racing, 6 out of 7 are bareback, and some with kids of 12-14, who are excellent riders .
There was a lot of waiting for the horses to come around and the locals gather and chat in low crouches for long times and are at ease - sitting on the ground was much less popular We tried it and it was hard and. Not exactly relaxing
Some of the stalls and the head of Tuvan festival
Our trip to Tuva included the Naadym festival Mongolian wrestling, horse racing and archery. Today we went to the horse racing event Tons of people, a big open field with lots of local food Horses of course !
Yes camels are traditional here

13 August 2017

At the centre of Asia monuments
Solar Deer atop Center of Asia obelisk
Statue of the Royal Hunting Stunning - absolutely
Center of Asia stature
The capital of Tuva A small place with lots of history The Russian alphabet means it gets written different ways Kyzyl to use a standard keyboard but distorts the pronunciation Bit Кызыл is correct and you have to know how to pronounce those Russian letters not in the English alphabet My 3 years of Russian in high school helped a lot - reading and pronouncing - understanding was more difficult but very useful on the trip
Kyzyl Tuva Wonderful welcome to Tuva !!!
Tuva or Bust. (Feynman reference) 5 hours packed 16 of us rain and lots of construction
Made it to Abakan Airport Not quite in Tuva yet -

12 August 2017

Fun day in Moscow coming to a close
One of most famous buildings in the world St Basil's Cathedral in Moscow
Red Square Красная Плошадь Pretty famous
A walk at the underground mall near the Kremlin
McDonalds in Moscow A canadian venture pioneered long ago by McDonalds Canada We didn't try the food though Looking for something more local !
Some beautiful buildings on a beautiful day

11 August 2017

First seen here The pink stiletto heels as a designated parking spots for women at the Moscow Airport Google it of you don't believe me !
Smiling Linda Nap after long travel day in Moscow

11 August 2017

Made it to Moscow - after 2 long flights ! Same weather as Toronto
At airport in Brussels Home of Tintin and Milou of course (Snowy in English)
Getting close !
Ready to leave Toronto and head to the airport The adventure begins

9 August 2017

Digger is going into hibernation for tomorrow's departure First red eye Brussels then Moscow, then red eye Abakan Golden slumbers for him anyway.
Off tomorrow on a double red eye !!!! To Tuva - the center of Asia Between Siberia and Mongolia