How Bishkek celebrates Valentine’s Day

Like every other holiday, whether or not it originated in Kyrgyz culture, Bishkek doesn’t miss a chance to set up colorful photo backdrops in Ala Too Square and bring out various props to pose with.

(A photographer pep-talk, holidays are big business on the square.)

Sometimes that prop is a giant komuz.

Sometimes it’s peacocks (real or stuffed), pigeons or rabbits.

I also saw plenty of ladies walking around with flowers, balloons and stuffed animals. Who cares if Valentine’s Day is a cheesy, commercialized Western export; sometimes it’s nice to have an excuse to be romantic.

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