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  • J-1 Visas (…And Grassroots Public Diplomacy) At Risk
    In April, Trump signed “Buy American Hire American,” an executive order that targeted the H-1B visa because it supposedly screwed over American workers by driving down wages. Think what you will about the H-1B, which brings foreign workers in specialty occupations (especially tech) to work at US companies by a...
  • Small Scenes of Summer
    In the last three months, I’ve: finished up 2 years of Peace Corps service; moved into a new apartment in New York City; wandered through 12 airports on layovers, customs checks, and diverted flights; journeyed by bus, plane, train, car, and even boat to visit old friends and new cities...
  • Kyrgyzstani Classics: The Day Lasts More than a Hundred Years
    Did you get a chance to read Mark’s guest post about Chyngyz Aitmatov’s novella Jamilia? If not, check it out, and while you’re on his site, check out a few other gems of his — in addition to knowing all about Central Asian pop stars, he’s better than me at blogging...
  • Kyrgyzstani Classics: Jamilia
    Fellow PCV and Central Asian culture enthusiast Mark, who blogs at Monday Bazaar, agreed to do an exchange of posts on the work of Kyrgyzstan’s most famous author, Chyngyz Aitmatov. His post about the classic novella Jamilia and the fantastic film adaptation is up first. Check out his blog on Facebook and...
  • For When Internet Jok 9
    Although I’m often amazed at how great telecommunications work in this country, there are still stretches of time when internet jok — there’s no internet. In anticipation of those long hours, days, weekends, I like to load up on reading material while at work or cafes. Here’s a compilation of some of the...
  • When A Name’s Not Just a Name
    Schools in Kyrgyzstan are registered according to a number, but people identify a school by its namesake. A school might be named for famous Russian writers (Pushkin School) or revolutionaries (Lenin School), for respected Kyrgyz leaders (Kalygul Bai uulu School) or ballerinas (Beyshenalieva School). The ability to name a place – whether...