Roses Everywhere in Almaty!
I met up with Wendy, a new British friend of mine, who lives next to Panfilov park. Naturally I had to take photos of ALL the roses along the way from my walk down to meet her. What was extra beautiful was for both of us to hear the church bells chiming right at 8:00 a.m. A steady beat of 4/4 time with three notes and then another busy cadence sounding above the reassuring throb of the heavy church bell. We went inside and felt very much the tourists without our heads covered and not giving proper respect with crossing ourselves as all the other worshippers did when they entered or drew near to this well preserved relic of Russian Orthodox. Of course, it still is a functioning church and the priest was behind the altar chanting his words while the bells rang overhead.
Outside God had all His roses arranged in different hues out on display everywhere I walked this morning. I have a true appreciation for the gardeners who take care of these thorny friends, they seem to thrive in Almaty. Perhaps, sadly the same can not be said for Russian Orthodox churches. What was odd to me was seeing a Kazakh woman hugging a tree just a stone’s throw from the church, I guess that was her own form of worship. Meanwhile, Wendy and I walked to a coffee shop and enjoyed an early cup of coffee and vowed we would do this again.