I am now in Kazakhstan, and if you’re reading this it means I’ve got internet access enough to upload it. I’m holding off any first impressions because I don’t understand anything about the culture or the society yet.

One thing I can write about is an adventure I had last night. I went to a nightclub, and… I’m not a fan of nightclubs.

Our russian-speaking guide, Alima, invited us out for a meal as it was her birthday. I had lamb sausage with cabbage, I think it’s borscht? Once the meal was over she invited us out dancing. I couldn’t refuse because she knew the way back to the hotel, and I wasn’t going to make my way through Almaty in the evening on my second night here.

The club was actually in a war memorial garden. The garden had neat rows of monuments to soldiers who died protecting Moscow in 1941. At the end of the garden there was a cannon and a few flags, followed by the nightclub.

In the club all the women wore low tops, short skirts; had high heels and big breasts. Lots of make-up. The men wore casual shirts and had huge biceps. The DJ played pop music from mainstream western boy bands. There was a song called ‘pussy control’ which was about as offensive as its title suggests.

Despite being halfway across the world the Kazakh nightclub could be in any western city. I think I’ve understood the general idea: they put a nightclub in a war memorial, and the entire experience remained completely unchanged.

Still, Alima looked like she was having fun.

Today I’m going to visit the offices of the Communist Party of Kazakhstan, and possibly visit the National State Museum.

A student here called Termilan said he googled me and he mentioned that he reads this blog. Hello Termilan!