The Tea and Snow Adventure

It was a calm February evening, one of those you enjoy sitting in front of… well, I’d like to say in front of the fireplace in a Gothic house, but we are not in England of early 20th century, and I’m not Arthur Conan Doyle getting ready to tell you another story of Mr. Holmes. I was sitting in front of my laptop browsing the web, when all of a sudden an unexpected journey began. Somehow almost just as it happened with Bilbo Baggins, perhaps, with the only difference of us being not in Shire, but in Armenia. Anyways… It was a matter of 15 minutes. In a short Facebook chat me and two of my friends we decided to take a trip to the mountains… to drink tea. Yes. To drink tea. As if there’s no other place left on this planet except the snowy Aragats mountain about 20 km north of our town. The tea was in the thermos, the cameras were in our bags, and we were in my friend’s Toyota, approaching the 13th century Tegher monastery, located on southeastern slopes of Mount Aragats, when… the car got stuck in snow… with only about 50 meters left to the church.

At first, we thought the situation wasn’t that bad, we cleared the tires off the snow, pushed the car, but it went back and sank even deeper. Well now this was a task to do. We had no tools. And with every attempt the situation would get worse and worse, until the car was stuck so deep, we couldn’t move it anymore. “Maybe we should go to the nearby village and borrow a shovel to clear the snow?” suggested one of us, Andranik.

Me and him we left our friend Armen in the car and walked up the hill to the church, and soon enough reached a house. There was so much snow around we couldn’t find the entrance. Crawling, almost swimming in the snow, I reached the window and knocked. An old man came out. He didn’t look surprised at all when we described our problem. “Many cars got stuck here today, the shovel’s there, you can take it,” said he kindly. We walked back.

(photo by A. Keshishyan)

It took us about 2 hours to get the car out of snow, and if not the two men who were passing by on their car and stopped for us to help, we would probably have to call someone with a truck to drive up the mountain road to pull us out. By that time we were freezing already – noses cold and feet wet. When the car was free, we parked on the edge of the cliff, got in and drank the tea. “Well, that’s how one should go drinking tea in the mountains. Here’s for our adventure,” said we drinking the hot liquid happily.

(photo by A. Keshishyan)

After warming up, we decided to walk up the hill to the Tegher church to take some photographs. The Tegher Monastery was built in 1221 AD for Princess Khatun, who was the wife of Prince Vache Vachutian. The Prince purchased the district of Aragatsotn from the Zakarian brothers. The monastery was designed by the architect Vardapet Aghbayrik, who also designed the monasteries of Saghmosavank and Hovhannavank during the 13th century.

But we were out of luck that evening. Or better say, the weather was not playing on our side. As we reached the church, a strong and ice-cold wind began to blow, making it impossible for us to stay outside. In just 2-3 minutes I couldn’t feel my fingers anymore. Being able to shoot just few photos, we rushed back to the car, started the engine and drove away, leaving the monastery, the mountains and the snow behind.


6 thoughts on “The Tea and Snow Adventure

  1. You guys seem to have picked the worst weather to have tea on the mountains 😉

    Two hours to get the car out of that thick snow doesn’t sound much fun, but it certainly is an adventure (and makes a great blog post too) 🙂

    I really appreciate you posting the pictures, without which we would only have our imagination (and I’m sure, at least for myself, that imagination won’t do justice to the actual scenario, like the thickness of the snow in this post, for example).

  2. The pics are reaaaally nice!! Well done, and 3biz2u 🙂
    (somehow I wasn’t too surprised about your decision to go along with the “drinking tea in the mountains” idea, in spite of the snow 😉 )

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