November 12.21: Okay Guys, Be Alive!

It’s one of those brisk sunny late autumn days perfect for walking… We head over to the French Cultural Center Isteza, located in a tiny madrasah with a fascinating history, to meet with our new friend Irina and learn (en français!) about the Center’s diverse resources and programming including an exhibition by another Irina, this one a painter, whose 2016 project 60 Faces of Bukhara includes a beautiful portrait of our own dear Umida, matriarch of Art Guest House USTO! Then it’s on to see how Bukhara youth are organizing to raise environmental awareness and save the world at the EcoChange conference organized by SWS participant Shakhzoda and friends. After an intense Ninja-themed ice-breaker, topics covered included Walking More, Eating Less, and How To Dissuade Your Parents From Throwing Garbage Out The Window During Road Trips. Our short presentation on eco-friendly filmmaking was enthusiastically received and then we ate cake, took a bunch of selfies, and enjoyed a long walk home through mysterious neighbourhoods with beautiful trees, Soviet-style buildings and terrific signage.

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