You Are Here Ornament – Kazakhstan

Mini mugs have a special place in my heart and I am always excited to see the new ones coming out. This release is no exception, please meet Starbucks You Are Here Ornament – Kazakhstan that makes it the 150th little “ornie” from this collection. Interestingly enough, there is no sign of the bigger mug being released yet, but something tells me this is just a matter of time. I don’t recall a country ornament without a full-sized mug from Starbucks, do you?
Kazakhstan is the world’s largest country with no exit to an ocean (landlocked). Its neighbors include Russia, China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan but not Mongolia, although they are only 37 kilometers apart, separated by a short portion of the border between Russia and China.
Here’s another interesting fact: since the release of Astana YAH, the mug for the capital of the country (2017), the city was later renamed to Nur-Sultan, after former Kazakhstani President Nursultan Nazarbayev (on 23 March 2019). I now wonder if they re-release another YAH with “Nur-Sultan” in the title. It is very unlikely, but not entirely impossible.

As for this particular ornament, it showcases the following symbols of Kazakhstan:
– A teapot and a cup – black tea is a very popular beverage in the country. This tradition came from its neighbors – China. Kazakhs prefer to add milk to their tea.
– The mountains all across the mug are probably the Tian Shan range (on the south of the country) with the mountain Khan Tengri being the tallest among others. It stands 23,000 ft tall above sea level.
– Baiterek is a monument and observation tower in Nur-Sultan. It represents an egg of a magic bird laid in the crevice between the branches of the tree and is considered a symbol of post-independence Kazakhstan.
– The dombra is the most popular and the oldest traditional string instrument in Kazakhstan. It represents a long-necked lute with two strings.

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