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Lynda Topp gets intrepid

Mon 31 Jan 2011 In: Television View at Wayback View at NDHA

Lynda Topp's musical expedition through Tajikistan features in this week's episode of TV One's much-loved travel series Intrepid Journeys. Topp journeys the rough and remote Pamir Highway up to heights of 4,655 metres, stopping in villages still using ox to pull their ploughs. She experiences music so ancient it is on the verge of extinction, and plays the spoons with a group of old musicians whose home-crafted instruments and style of playing are in danger of vanishing, despite being thousands of years old. This series opened with TV weatherman Tamati Coffey braving a night under the open skies of the desert surrounded by 100 camels in Oman. Coffey says being asked to do Intrepid Journeys was a real thrill, but the excitement didn't prepare him for the experience ahead. "I did mention to the producer's I liked hot places," he says. "But be careful what you wish for. I meant the beach or somewhere balmy. They sent me to Oman in the summer heat which is like 50 degrees from sun up to sun down. I am glad I did it but I am not so sure travelling in 50 degree heat is a good idea." The food Oman had on offer was also a real highlight for Coffey, and he discovered a whole new appreciation for hummus: "I can't get enough of the stuff. It was breakfast, lunch and dinner most days." The weatherman also found it a real education in a cultural and religious sense: "It was really interesting to see the Muslim culture and religion in action," reveals Coffey. "Realising there are countries run by religion was an eye opener. "I also learnt that even when it is 50 degrees Celsius, you can't fry an egg on the road. I know this because I tried, not once, several times. It just seemed like the right thing to do being a weatherman, to give some back up to the term 'it's hot enough to fry an egg'. But take it from me, chances are, it isn't," Coffey concludes. In the episode the openly-gay Coffey discusses feeling incredibly far away from home and missing his boyfriend. You can watch Tamati Coffey's Intrepid Journey at TVNZ On Demand. Lynda Topp's Intrepid Journey screens at 8.30pm on Thursday. Jacqui Stanford - 31st January 2011    

Credit: Jacqui Stanford

First published: Monday, 31st January 2011 - 12:47pm

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