Yesterday I accompanied the entire staff of the software company where I work to a place located in the Davitashen district of Yerevan called Ten Out of 10 with the main objective of eating the coveted khash at the unorthodox time of 2:30 in the afternoon. I had to drive there since I wanted to make an early departure from the huge complex, which is rather large and has a lovely view of the Hrazdan Gorge, with private dining rooms, a shooting gallery, and an area where you can ride horses. Most of the others in our group rode in taxis so that they could drink vodka since without it eating the soggy stuff is for the most part pointless. I was I believe the only one who didn’t partake in the khash fest since I wasn’t going to drink and opted for pork barbecue instead.
Anyway, the fascinating part of the afternoon was watching people riding the horses. I didn’t find out the cost, it couldn’t have been more than a few dollars I would assume, but it was the only place where I have seen such an opportunity being given to those who never had the pleasure to jump on the back of one and go for a leisurely ride around a perimeter, which must have been about 300 meters in circumference. The horses I assume are trained very well because they knew exactly what they were doing in terms of the direction to strut, sort of on automatic pilot, and the riders simply had to put their feet in the stirrups, not to mention hold on to the reins of the bridle. The horses were in excellent shape from what I saw at least and were kept in very clean stalls, a rarity in a country where animal welfare and protection is a secondary issue in general. One of them supposedly was in a sort of sleepy volatile state in his stable so we were advised to stay away from him when examining the animals. I didn’t have time to ride a horse but at least I know where to go whenever the inclination arises to do so, or anyone else for that matter. There’s something about sitting on the back of an animal and expecting it to cart you around that doesn’t sit right with me, nevertheless people have been doing it for millennia in arguable all world cultures so they obviously know something that I don’t.
I also stayed away from the shooting range where apparently you can aim at targets with pistols and other firearms to get out your frustrations I imagine, without the need to possess a permit to carry a gun. I’ve never fired a gun and don’t want to put my hands on one at this point in my life, especially when I have no desire whatsoever to kill anything. The name of the place undoubtedly coincides with the aim accuracy scoring. It was rumored that at one point you could shoot to kill free-range animals that were confined to an area so they could be cleaned and cooked for you on the spot. Thankfully that is no longer (or hopefully never has been) the case.
Regardless, it was a lovely afternoon and a great place to spend some time. I recommend it to anyone visiting or who is living here and hasn’t been.