Sunday, August 08, 2004

And behold, there was Ararat 

I thought some readers would like a few pictures of Armenia. It's an historic place, with nothing more historical to non-Armenians than Mt. Ararat. You may realize that Ararat, a national symbol to Armenians, is over the border into easternmost Turkey, and the border is closed due to continued tensions between Armenians and Turks. So one can get close but not go to the mountain. That we did yesterday, going to the monastery at Khor Virop. Ararat, of course, is the mountain on which Noah's Ark landed after the Flood.

Here are a couple of shots. The first is of the monastery itself. While we were there, a family that had driven from Yerevan had a memorial ceremony for a relative who had recently passed away.

The second is of Ararat and Masis (a.k.a. pokr Ararat or "little Ararat") with Khor Virop in the foreground as if a sentinel.

Between the two lies the Arax River which separates Turkey from Armenia and Armenians from their heritage. My friend Raffi has more interesting pictures and the story of Khor Virop.