Coney Island, the strip of land at the southernmost end of Brooklyn, is one of the most nostalgic places in New York City. The amusement park, which has been around in some form since the mid-1800's, still has that run-down, old-timey quality to it that defies the modern steel rollercoasters and refurbished boardwalk...
Along the south shore of Issyk Kul, near the village of Barskoon (Барскон), the single road that hugs the perimeter of the lake splits off to the left. This was once a Silk Road shortcut, providing access over a towering mountain pass into China. Now the road is largely maintained by Canada.
Though Cochin's Jewish population has almost always benefitted from that good old Kerala religious tolerance— stunning in contrast to routinely violent anti-Semitism in Europe— their numbers have dwindled through conversion and immigration over time. The remaining Jewish population in the city (as of 2014) is: Six.
With Uzbekistan getting the lion's share of Islamic architectural masterpieces from the heyday of the Silk Road, Yasawi's mausoleum is a jewel in Kazakhstan. Although it was never finished, it bears the signature stunning tile work and onion-shaped domes of all the great monuments of the day.
Winter in Kazakhstan was not something I was entirely looking forward to. I knew temperatures could plummet to -30°C at night (-22°F if it even matters at that point), with far less extreme but squarely sub-zero days. I was aware that the already noticeable air pollution would increase as the heat was turned on (this is done city-wide, all at once).
Like most big festivals, Positivus is BYO tent and pick your own spot. The big grassy lawn adjacent to the parking area will be your home for three days where you'll join half the Latvian 20-something age bracket, a lot of Estonians and Lithuanians, a handful of Brits and Germans, and the American contingent could very well have just been me.