The main objective of my visit to Tbilisi was the architecture of the city’s centre. However, what about its people?
I was fresh from a rather disappointing stint in Oman, where I succeeded in being ignored, shooed off or be treated like a movable ATM by basically anyone, locals and immigrants alike. Given this precedent, I think I can be excused if I say I was a little bit wary of making encounters with locals and the stern faces I met at immigration and, later, in the arrivals lounge of Tbilisi airport seemed to confirm this feeling.
It didn’t take long, though, to realize that Georgians are, possibly, one of the friendliest bunch of people I met in a long time. Helpful and kind, they might at first put you off with some of the toughest looks in Europe (seriously, I thought some guys might’ve had a previous career in the local KGB) but in facts they are anything but. It had been some time, possibly from my time in Marseille, since when I had the chance to chat happily with complete strangers on buses, cafes or at a corner shop.
Georgians are also an interesting people to look at. Their features are a fascinating melange of traits that may sometimes seem Slavic, sometimes Iranian, sometimes Turkic and more often than not nothing like any of the above. People photography is something I’m new at and not entirely confident with, so I didn’t go for portraits; but, nonetheless, a few of my photos from that day included people. Here they are, caught in their everyday actions: looking out from a window, discussing on the street, or watching the world go by.
Click on any of the photos below to start the slideshow.
Checking out the action unfolding in the basement shop below.
Watching the world going by.
You chat, I keep an eye on that camera-toting fella over there.
They wouldn’t have gone amiss in a Sergio Leone film.
I wouldn’t have imagined for a second that this building could’ve been inhabited. Yet it was.
This is the bit of Tbilisi that had already made it and it was cafe galore.