My first snow in Bishkek

By Rob Packer

My predictions came true. When I was first moving to Bishkek in October, I did what most people do and checked the weather forecast. Sunny and 30°C at the end of September was not what I expected to see. I’d been told it would be cold and had to work it out for myself that at some point in the near future, the temperature would drop off a cliff.  There were a couple of cold snaps in October and an item on the forecast each time that Bishkek would see its first snow in the “next few days”. Each time, I’d look out the window in the morning and there’d be no snow. So when the temperature climbed over 20°C last week and the whispers started that snow was on the way, it sounded like those whisperers were crying wolf. They weren’t and the weekend’s days of rain changed overnight. This is the view that greeted me out of the window this morning:

Bishek Snow 1

The view out the back window

Bishkek Snow 2

And of the building site at the front

I think the last time I saw proper snow was in 2003 when I lived in Berlin, rather than the melted-by-lunchtime variety that I’m most used to from growing up in the UK (I know there were snowstorms in 2008 and 2009, but in Hong Kong we were breathing easy that it wasn’t the typhoon season). Predictions for the rest of the week are that I’ll be slipping on the ice as it starts to form and getting an earful for not having warm enough clothes.


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