On the first working day after leaving the protracted quarantine in the roadside cafe “Salang” there are many visitors:

people are happy to drink tea with cakes, order a crown dish – kuyirdak, snack on salads. Twenty-one years of a cafe with such an unusual name cordially greets the travelers of the Uralsk- Atyrau republican highway. – This is the late husband Tengelbai Duisengaliev called our cafe in memory of the years of service in Afghanistan, “says the owner of the cafe Lyazat Seitkarieva. – He was a teacher in our school, but helped me all. And to this day, for the first time, passing motorists stop and ask if there are colleagues here.


Under the agreement, Salang serves regular buses around the clock – Ikarusy to Atyrau, private taxi parks, truck drivers, we hospitally meet all travelers. We started with our husband with a grocery store in Aksuat in 1996 to buy the first product sold a cow, they carried goods from the city with bags. Gradually got to their feet in those difficult years, they decided to start a new type of business – a roadside dining room. They bought an old car driver, dragged him to the highway, how they could ennoble him and began to feed drivers and bus passengers. Looking back, comparing with modern conditions, I just give the diva how we worked: there was no electricity, there was no gas, too, they were heated with a furnace and also cooked on live fire. There were no refrigerators, they kept everything in specially dug holes. The time then was so hard, they survived as they could. Then the husband built a small building, the electricity was let down, the cafe reached a new level, later opened its small peasant farm, began to raise cattle, began to receive the first dividends from their work, but fate was brutally ordered. In 2008, our heroine survived the tragic departure of her husband, and after him a year later there was no older 21-year-old son, then two years later the life of the youngest teenage son was cut short… Relatives helped recover from such crazy grief.

Albina Baigunakova


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