Shamkir is a town. Not really a city since it lacks in size; I apparently walked almost the whole town within 2 hours. It is much bigger than a village. It is the prominent town in the Shamkir region and quite pretty. Shamkir is located on a small incline with the main road to Ganga and Agstafa at the bottom of the hill and the Bazaar at the top. It has at least 5 parks and not a bit of trash anywhere on the ground. People hang out in the parks with tall tress, sculpted trees, fountains, park benches, statues, and marble staircases. Sitting in the park could make one almost think he was in a modern country. The amount of cars and traffic isn’t bothering either. Seeing a car isn’t a rare incident, but the small amount of cars keeps the noise level down and makes it feel like a suburban area.

It is much different from my last town—Kotej. Shamkir has a pristine feeling. I haven’t seen animals in the streets as much as I did in Kotej. All that scatters around are the usual birds and cats here. Sometimes I miss seeing the dogs, sheep, goats, and rare cow. Families don’t seem to keep chickens and sheep here as eventual food-pets either. Beyond the nicely designed parks, Shamkir’s swanky feel can be seen in some decoratively designed tin roofs.

In an earlier post, I mentioned that Shamkir used to be a German settlement. The German aspects pop out at me—especially since I studied German for 4 years. The water channel between every side-walk and road I have seen before in Freiburg, Germany. The few white walled with dark wood trim and roof houses represent almost every town in Germany. The main feature that screams “GERMAN” is the now-abandoned Lutheran Church.

A different town, a different feel. I really like Shamkir. It’s kind of like they knew about me and my life before I did. They took my past and present, mixed it up, and built a town. We should get along just fine.

Istiglal Park. I walk through it every day

Istiqlal Park again

The water channel between the street and sidewalk

The building I work in

The Christmas tree to bring in the New Year