“Where Is This Place?” aka “I Was Invited to a Country I Didn’t Know Existed”, by Max Reisinger.
Max describes a trip to Azerbaijan ( sovereign county, a former Soviet republic on the Caspian Sea, capital Baku, largely Islamic) which he was invited to go on around the time of his 18th birthday, with other young journalists. This all happened about the time of his high school graduation and his skydiving lesson (which “everybody” does: Trey Yingst, Avi Schiffmann, Matthew Cappucci, Tyler Mowery, and a bartender/waiter at Freddie’s in Arlington VA).
The itinerary took them through Istanbul, and some of the content was displayed on Max’s “MaxTV” Patreon channel.
He saw lots of remnants of war, left in the field, and I don’t know off hand the history. He meets the kids in the park. There is no religious tension, the practice of religion seems moderate as in the US. But he has to take off shoes to enter a mosque.
The city of Baku is spectacular with architecture, and super modern and luxury hotels, one of them renovated from a castle.
Max's style here, while playful at times, looks toward the detail of a Johnny Harris video, or even the current reporting of News2Share (Ford Fischer).
Oh, yes, you had to be fully vaccinated to go.
Picture: Gobustan petroglyphs, Wikipedia embed, click for attribution