Herbs, good herbs.
„Who would like to go and explore herbs with me tomorrow?” an old Tajik asks, who actually even shouldn’t be that old.
„To the mountains? ME!” I yelled out way too exited, but being quick and loud I manage to save a seat for myself in the car.
„Herbs… about time I learned something useful,” being proud of my upcoming lesson and thinking to myself how I will later share all this new wisdom with everyone in the guest house.
We take our seats in the car. Me, the driver, Tajik old man and one local mom with her three children.
Tajik: „You know my uncle is a famous healer in Tajikistan! Once he even cured a Russian Oligarch from cancer.”
Me: „Hmm? So we are collecting the herbs for him? What does he need?”
Tajik: „I will show you – I have spent several months with him in the mountains!”
In the mountains.
Tajik [picks up a purple plant with a long stem]: „Hmmm, I think this is it!”
Me [imagining giggling clients if this plant should turn out to be poisonous]: „Are you sure?”
Tajik [twirls the flower in his hands, smells it, doubts, picks few more of them]: „Yes, I am totally sure!”
We start gathering the plants until we end up with armful of desired purple flowers.
Tajik: „Hey, maybe you could make a picture of these and send it to your mom to ask what kind of plant is this?”
Me: „Eeee… I think she is sleeping at the moment… due to the time difference? And eeee… In Estonia I think we do not have this kind of plants.”
Tajik: „Hmm, yes. Okay… well either way I am totally sure that this is the right one we need!”
I walk further away to pick bigger plants from steeper area and I find a similar plant, but with much more intense smell.
Me: „Hey, can we also pick these? Is this useful for something?”
Tajik: „Whoaaa, that was what we were searching for!! YES, the previous ones are also good, but this is EVEN BETTER!”
Now we are picking a new armful of new and BETTER plants.
Yet again I wander off a little where I could pick finer specimens.
I find another similar one, but much smaller bush of plants, which smells like herbs usually should smell like.
Me: „What is this?”
Tajik: „Let me see… THIS IS IT!”
Me: „Ahaa… so we need to gather these?”
Tajik: „Yes, this is VERY GOOD! This is exactly what my uncle needs!!!”
Two hours later.
The car is packed with good, better and VERY GOOD herbs.
Tajik: „You know, the last time I went to the mountains with my uncle I was 12!”
Madle: „Yes, you don’t have to be the brightest to catch that.” [I actually didn’t say it :D]
Tajik [answers the phone]: „Hello? /…/ Oh, god!”
It turned out that he has to go to the capital instantly.
It was a marvellous day. If somebody dreams about exploring herbs in Kyrgyz mountains, I can freely help you with that!