Thursday, April 22, 2010

Traditions...Backgammon...

Backgammon game is called “nərd” in Azerbaijan. Just in case for those who don’t know dictionary says “backgammon is a game for two people played on a board with pieces moved according to throws of the dice”.
Behind this definition there is a lot of passion, excitement, heat for many men and quite often women in Azerbaijan who love to play backgammon. What happens usually is that after a good meal and a cup of tea many friends would continue tea ceremony playing backgammon...When game heats up often tea is forgotten, pieces are struck harder on the board (with loud sound to stress good chances of the dice) and winner is anticipating how he would be teasing his friend later saying “well, one day I will teach you how to play backgammon”. And then of course the other player wants to even the score and the excitement continues...Depending on temperament of the players game would be accompanied with laughter, teasing, jokes and stories about previous victories of the players (needless to say that every player insists that he is The professional). My father is playing less backgammon nowadays but I remember very well how he and his close friend would play a game or two at our place and we girls would run in to the room now and then and ask “so, who is winning” and of course the answer from both would be “why are you asking? don’t you know?” We didn’t know but would play up to them and choose one or the other to support or tease...these are very warm and kind memories of my childhood that I cherish very much...
It is still very common to see here and there people playing backgammon in the parks or local tea houses in Azerbaijan. I am not personally a backgammon player but I think that it is the game that can distract from routine and troubles as well as give an opportunity to interact and socialize...something that is happening less and less with games turning into virtual and socializing becoming cyber...

Some pictures on backgammon...
My cousin, Qiyasov Shahin, is specializing in creating beautiful pieces of backgammon from different sorts of wood. With different ornaments and shades depending on type of wood and complexity of work all pieces are handcrafted in his studio in Sheki. Shahin's pieces are in many local and foreign private collections. He can be contacted by following emails f_kh_g@hotmail.com; qiyasli@gmail.com or via this blog.
Shahin's backgammon...

I am not sure if you can see on this photo but actually there are backgammon sessions going on there. I took this photo last summer while in Sheki and since then the photo was waiting for its time to be shared with you...:) Couldn't go closer...feeling kind of shy :)) local mentality you see :)



This is one of my favourite pictures that I took in Kish village of Sheki back in year 2007. You can read my post on this photo here but today it fits perfectly to this post too :)

Share

5 comments:

kama:) said...

Great post, darling! Your feelings are very familiar to me, cause I also had..or..have those feelings! :) The only thing what I didn't like during the game session was when they asked me to bring the backgammon to them :D

Ayten Qiyas-Rustamova said...

:)

Glennis said...

great to see a group of oldermen enjoying a great game. That board is amazing, very intricate.

A and Y Ikeda said...

You have a fabulous blog here and I want to read more. When is a new post coming up?
Take care,
Anna

Ayten Qiyas-Rustamova said...

Thank you very much, Glennis! Thank you very much, Anna, hope to be able to write more going forward! :)