I was extremely happy to find 3 cards from Uzbekistan in my mailbox yesterday! :) Valeriy from Tashkent was very kind to answer my swaprequest and to send me 3 cards separately (written and stamped), even though I didn't ask him to do so :) Valeriy, I don't know if you read my blog, but if you do - I just want to tell you I'm very thankful for the wonderful cards you sent me! :) Спасибо большое!
I thought they would take a longer time to arrive here, but in fact they got here in just 10 days. Another nice surprise was that one of the Uzbek postcards has enriched my UNESCO collection :) Samarkand - Crossroads of Culture has been a World Heritage Site since 2001. By the way, I thought I live in an old city (1009 years old), but compared to Samarkand (2750 years old) the history of Wrocław and Poland in general seems to be so short...
One of my postcards related dreams is to receive at least one postcard from each of ex-USSR countries. There are 15 of them (or 17, if you count also Abkhazia and South Ossetia, but in my opinion they're not independent countries, at least not yet, so my goal is to receive cards from 15 countries) and I've already received cards from 8 of them (Ukraine, Russia, Belarus, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan), which is more than half :) But receiving cards from the missing 7 countries (Moldova, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Armenia, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan) will be much more difficult and I think it may take several years :) But don't you think it's good to have some goals that are hard to achieve? :)
Samarkand (Uzbek: Samarqand, Самарқанд, Persian: سمرقند, UniPers: "Samarqand"), is the second-largest city in Uzbekistan and the capital of Samarqand Province.The city is most noted for its central position on the Silk Road between China and the West, and for being an Islamic centre for scholarly study. The Bibi-Khanym Mosque remains one of the city's most famous landmarks. The Registan was the ancient centre of the city. In 2001, UNESCO inscribed the 2750-year-old city on the World Heritage List as Samarkand - Crossroads of Cultures.
Samarkand derives its name from the Old Persian asmara, Tajik Самарқанд, "stone", "rock", and Sogdian kand, "fort", "town".
Samarkand is one of the oldest inhabited cities in the world, prospering from its location on the trade route between China and the Mediterranean (Silk Road). At times Samarkand has been one of the greatest cities of Central Asia. Founded circa 700 BC by the Persians it was already the capital of the Sogdian satrapy under the Achaemenid dynasty of Persia when Alexander the Great conquered it in 329 BC Samarkand has been one of the main centres of Persian civilization from its early days.