February. March. April.

17 feb 2014 march 29,2014

The fountains in Ala-Too Square were turned on today. The rains abated, the dandelions seemed to sprout overnight in the parks, and spring in its greenly gloriousness parked its juicy hopeful blue skies and yes in the middle of this city. Lilac bushes have opened their purple faces and jazzed the air. You can smell the luscious relief that winter has passed and once again life blooms and spills and oozes and ripens all around us. All around us.

april 30

 

Two years ago in early April thousands took to the streets in the city center of Bishkek infuriated over corruption in government, soaring utility bills and unresponsive leadership. Groups seized the Ministry of the Interior building, the state broadcasting building. The government responded by deploying hundreds of troops who shot dead dozens of protesters. Many more were injured.

Hundreds gathered this year for the anniversary. There was no violence. There were speeches. There were flowers laid at the foot of a statue to commemorate the dead and wreaths hung from the iron fence around the White House. And above all of it was the Kyrgyz flag, snapping insistently in gusts of early April wind.

kyrgyz flag