Monday, June 26, 2006

Photo for June 27, 2006.

mediterranean_sunset, originally uploaded by nazarian.

Mediterranean sunset.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Photo for June 21, 2006.

church and surveilance camera, originally uploaded by nazarian.

The flag, the surveilance camera and the church.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Picture for June 19, 2006.

GoogleEarth_Yerevan_Hraparak, originally uploaded by nazarian.

This is a snapshot of the Republic Square (Hanrapetutyan Hraparak) in Yerevan with Google Earth.

It's true. Google Earth has updated Yerevan satellite photos and they are now high resolution pics. And the photos are no more than 2 years old (the design of the square was updated during the summer of 2003, so this photo was probably taken during or after May 2004).

So download Google Earth and enjoy exploting Yerevan and the surroundings. The rest of the country is still low resolution but I'm sure with time it will change.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Photo for June 15, 2006.

overheated_minibus, originally uploaded by nazarian.

This is an overheated minibus near the Haghtanak (Victory) Park in Yerevan, Armenia.

Minibuses are a popular form of transportation in Armenia. The popular name for them is 'marshrutni' or 'marshrutka'. They are mostly Soviet mad RAF-s but you can see also Russian made Gazels. This one, if I am not mistaken, is an Armenian made Yeraz.

The cause of overheating, besides carrying more people than the vehicle designers intended, is a combination of hot weather, and the steep climb on the hill.

The Haghtanak Park is located on top of a hill. There ae two ways to get to it from the downtown area. One is the Kaskad for pedestrians, and the other one is a narrow road for cars (there is no sidewalk for pedestrians so one should avoid walking there, or walk on the retaining wall).

As you notice, the driver has a handy plastic bucket. He filled it with water from a pulpulak (drinking fountain) in the park where, despite the presence of a few vendors selling drinks and the fact that the water belons to a foreign company, the water fountains still function.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Photo for June 12, 2006.

school_number_6_vanadzor_back, originally uploaded by nazarian.

Thie is the back of School No. 6 in Vanadzor. The land used to be the area that my class took care of in the mid 80-s. We cleaned it up, and actually planted a few poplar trees some of which are still there.

What's shocking is the state of disrepair. This photo was taken shortly after September 1. Notice the broken glass on the windows. And the weeds and general garbage in the yard. During the Soviets there would have been a Shabatoryak (the more widely known Subotnik) where the kids and staff would have cleaned up the mess.

The classroom on the second floor, at the corner of the building, was where I was during the 1988 December 7 earthquake. It was a regular sunny day and were were in the middle of a physics exam. Fortunately, the building held up well unlike quite a few buildings a couple of miles away in the Khimzavod district. The immediate aftermath was a surreal experience. The jammed streets, shocked people, and the blanket of dust from the collapsed buildings. And then everything went quiet until the details of the total destruction started trickling in.