Day 7-10, Yerevan I

Day 7, July 14th, Tue, Stepanakert – Yerevan I

Stepanakert-YerevanBefore hitting the road to Yerevan I went to the post office and then via Goris in direction to Yerevan.
I arrived at 7pm and stay with Alexander, a former classmate whom I met in Iran. He was living in Yerevan with his wife and daughter.
Later that evening we went to the centre where the play of fountains is accompanied with colours and classical music.

Day 8, July 15th, Wed, Yerevan II, Hatis

Alex recommended many things to do around Yerevan. But since he was busy I contacted R. whom I got to know on Couchsurfing. With her I went to Hatis mountain, taking the bus and hitchhiking then. Unfortunately the people didn’t know the area very well, so our hike took really long, but was super nice.

Day 9, July 16th, Thu, Yerevan III, Aknasar

The next day R., Arpik (Alex’ wife), Arvani (their daughter), Alex and me hiked to Aknasar mountain. We started at noon which was the reason why we didn’t make it to the summit. We passed a camp of Yazidis, who invited us for coffee and very delicious bread and cheese. As we continued an aggressive bull nearly attacked us.
On the way back we went to the Yazidis again to buy some of their delicious cheese.
It was nearly dark when we reached our start position and hitchhiked a truck with straw – but only for 500m to a farmer where we were invited for coffee again. R. taught me that is important for men in Armenia to shake each others hands when one is entering the room – apart from knowing each other or not.
In the end one family member took us to Abovyan and from there we went by taxi back to Yerevan.

Day 10, July 17th, Fri, Yerevan IV

I strolled through Yerevan, going to parks, the Genocide memorial and other sights. I met an American hitchhiker who was going to Georgia and helped her find the right way.

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Tag 5-6, Stepanakert-Martakert-Stepanakert

Tag 5, 12. Juli, So, Stepanakert-Martakert

Stepanakert-Martakert-StepanakertIch verließ Stepanakert, um in Richtung Norden aufzubrechen und dort auch wieder nach Armenien zu kommen. Vorher wollte ich noch in die, eigentlich militärisch gesperrte, Stadt Agdam, die vom Krieg vollständig zerstört wurde. Ich wurde zufällig von einem dort arbeitenden Soldaten mitgenommen, der allerdings Geld haben wollte. Trotzdem willigte ich ein.
Die Stadt ist nicht mit Tschernobil/Pripjat zu vergleichen. Dort stehen noch die Häuser, Pripjat ist eine Geisterstadt. In Agdam stehen in größtenteils höchstens noch die Außenwände – die Moschee wurde allerdings nicht zerstört. 30’000 Menschen hatte die Stadt einmal ein Zuhause geboten, nun wohnen dort noch eine Hand voll Soldaten und Händler mit ihrem Vieh.
In Martakert fand ich niemanden, der mich mitgenommen hätte. Also lief ich wieder einmal. Als ich an einen umgestürzten Strommast und eine Panzerkarosserie kam, beschloss ich, dort mein Lager aufzuschlagen. Es kam auch noch eine junge Familie vorbei, die extra umkehrte, um mich zum Bleiben in ihrem Haus zu überreden. Das war extrem freundlich, aber ich wollte endlich einmal in meinem Zelt schlafen.

Tag 6, 13. Juli, Mo, Martakert – Stepanakert

Ich wurde von einem LKW mitgenommen und durfte auf der Ladefläche Platz nehmen. Es war eine huckelige Fahrt, die mitten in einem Wald endete. Während ich weiterlief, bemerkte ich viele merkwürdige Insekten, die scheinbar unkontrolliert herumflogen. Ein altes Ehepaar nahm mich dann in die nächste Stadt, Heyval, mit. Dort hoffte ich, Postkarten kaufen zu können. Es stellte sich heraus, dass die nächste Post in Stepanakert ist. Also beschloss ich, wieder zurückzufahren, denn die Postkarten waren mir wichtig (die Karten sind beim Erstellen dieses Eintrages im März ’16 noch nicht angekommen).
Ich wollte von 4 Typen mitgenommen, von denen einer eine Schnellfeuerpistole mit sich führte, was sehr skurril war.
In Stepanakert zeltete ich dann neben einem Friedhof in der Nähe des Weltkriegsdenkmals und zur Post konnte ich erst am nächsten Tag, da an diesem Tag Feiertag war.
Abends kam auch ein Typ, der mich die ganze Zeit zuquatschte und mich auch zu sich einladen wollte, aber ich vertraute ihm nicht. Später kamen auch noch Polizisten, aber die hatte kein Problem damit, dass ich dort schlafen würde.

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Day 5-6, Stepanakert-Martakert-Stepanakert

Day 5, July 12th, Sun, Stepanakert-Martakert

Stepanakert-Martakert-StepanakertI left Stepanakert to go northbound and from there back to Armenia. Before that I wanted to see Agdam, a town that is officially a military area because it has been completely destroyed in the war and not accessible. I caught a ride with a soldier who was working there and who took me for some money.
Agdam is not comparable to Chernobyl or Pripyat. In the latter buildings are still standing, it’s a ghost town. Whereas in Agdam is destroyed; having some walls standing at the utmost. But the mosque ist still intact. 30,000 people used to live in this town, now it’s only home (a very simple and bad home) to some soldiers and merchants with their animals.
When I arrived in Martakert I didn’t find anyone who would take me further, so I had to walk again. When I passed a fallen electricity pole and a body of an old tank, I decided to pitch my tent there. Some time later a young family passed by and returned trying to convince me to stay with them. It was super nice of them, but I wanted to sleep in my tent.

Day 6, July 13th, Mon, Martakert – Stepanakert

The next day I was taken by a truck and stood on the bed. Since it was a dirt road, the ride was bumpy as hell and I was dropped off in the middle of the forest. While I was walking I noticed many strange insects that somehow flew around without control over their wings. An old couple gave me a ride to to the next town, Heyval. I hoped to be able to buy post cards there, but it turned out the nearest post office was in Stepanakert. So I went back, because it was an important matter for me (though none of them has arrived as of March 2k16). I got a ride with 4 guys of whom one had a machine pistol lying around which was quite bizarre.
In Stepanakert I camped next to a cemetery nearby the WWII monument and the post office was closed due to a national holiday, but open previous day.
In the evening one guy came by who was talking a lot and kind of offered me to stay in his house, but he was strange, so I denied. Later two police men showed up but didn’t care that I would sleep there.

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