TASHKENT, Uzbekistan (eTN) - Circumstances for my recent travel to Uzbekistan were not appropriate for me, because my doctors have advise me to keep away from any food that has animal fat and fried items for the next six months.
This medical advisory, of course, stops me from taking pleasure in eating many of the exotic foods of Uzbekistan including Somsa (samosa we call it in Pakistan and India), Shish Kebab (Seekh Kabab of Indian and Pakistan), Uzbek plov cooked in animal fat, and Uzbek Non (bread) that has animal fat and milk as its basic ingredients.
My doctors have also stopped me from eating mutton and beef, and it is almost impossible for anyone to resist the exotic smells of Uzbek Plov and Shish Kebab of mutton and beef. I had no option but to just smell and not to eat. It was like a âParadise of Addictsâ where you can have hashish and heroin all around you, but you do not have a matchbox to light a cigarette to smoke.
Therefore, it was better to keep myself away from Bazaars (markets) where the exotic aroma of Uzbek food could make me crazy, and I decided to explore parks and gardens to smell flowers instead of food.
I have been traveling to Uzbekistan since 1997 when I was a consultant to the Ministry of Tourism in the government of Pakistan. I have seen all types of weather and all the colors of Uzbekistan. It is different and more beautiful in the autumn. This time my visit was to attend the Tashkent Tourism Festival that was scheduled on October 31, and I was booked for October 30 flights from Lahore to Tashkent. However, this flight was canceled, and I had two options - to take an October 27 flight to reach Tashkent or to take a November 2 flight that was, of course, useless for me, because the festival was ending on November 2