“Listen! The world only exists in your eyes — your conception of it. You can make it as big or as small as you want to.”

F. Scott Fitzgerald, “The Crack-Up”

Near Iskander Kul, Tajikistan, July 2010.

My passion for travel has been nurtured and carefully cultivated from a young age, a passion that has led to a whole collection of adventures and misadventures along the long and winding road. This space is dedicated to a documentation of said adventures and misadventures, whether they be part of an extended period of traveling or just a short day trip.

I am currently a PhD candidate in the Department of History at the University of Michigan. I focus broadly on conceptions of Soviet citizenship, with some focus on Central Asia. This particular blog began under a different name to document a year as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant near Nuremberg, Germany, but having decided to continue the practice, I felt blogging under the title “Bavaria Bound” was no longer appropriate. As this continues the record without pause (unlike an isolated year abroad in 2007-08, documented here), I imported the old and have continued directly. As such, the blog began with a summer spent teaching at an English camp in South Korea and travelling in Japan, followed by almost ten months in Germany, a summer in Kazakhstan at the US Embassy in Kazakhstan, a year at Stanford completing an MA in Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies, and a summer studying Uzbek in Dushanbe, Tajikistan. After my first year at Michigan, I spent my summer divided between Moscow and Kazakhstan, and spent the following summer between California, Moscow, and Ukraine. The next big adventure is scheduled from approximately June 2014 to December 2015, as I prepare for long-term dissertation research throughout the former Soviet Union. This blog runs under the principle that no adventure or misadventure is too minor to be worth cataloging, and that there is a lot that can be explored in my own backyard, broadly defined, where ever in the world that happens to be.

Until December 2010, I operated with a Sony point-and-shoot. I have since upgraded to a Canon T1i, with which I take the vast majority of my pictures. It would probably be no exaggeration to call it my favorite possession.

This goes without saying, but the opinions written here in no way reflect the opinions or ideas of anyone other than myself.


3 thoughts on “About

  1. Anna, I am going to Tajikistan with my husband who has a Fulbright in Khudjand, and I would like to “chat” (phone or email). I live about 75 minutes from you in Bowling Green, Ohio and my email is nbrendl@bgsu.edu. Please get in touch. Nancy Brendlinger

  2. I’m glad I found your blog! Firstly, because you talk an awful lot about a part of the world that I’m extremely intrigued in, albeit I’ve just begun skirting the periphery of it (I mean that big swathe of land between the Balkans and Mongolia). And, secondly, because it’s the first blog I stumble upon in which each post has a small, succinct abstract of what happens in the remainder of the article, like the chapters in “The name of the rose” or “The Count of Montecristo”… How cool is that?

  3. Anna, your blog is fascinating. Thank you for sharing all your experiences. I wanted to get in touch with you re: donation of books written in Kazakh to your university or anyone who is interested in Kazakh literature and language. Is there an email address or Facebook account I can reach you at? Also, are you planning any further trips to Kazakhstan or Mongolia? Thank you.

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