I Found My Calling – Starting a Chain of Laundromats in Tajikistan

5 03 2009

I have to admit, I was a bit honored. Yesterday, I was in the car on the way to another branch office to do a presentation, along with the boss of a firm I’m working at and our driver. Amidst the conversation, she [the boss] asked me about my past work history.

Although usually, I try not to talk about it, I mentioned starting our magazine and how the whole thing unfolded. After listening to it, she turned and said: “You know, Boris, I think that you should just stay in Tajikistan. I am planning to start a laundromat chain, as there are none on the city, and I could use a few reliable people to run it. Yep, you should stay.”

My mind went “Hmm… interesting. There really aren’t any places to do laundry out here – maybe it could work!”

I always knew that there are opportunities out there if you just expose yourself to them. Although sometimes they aren’t quite what you expect.

If only I didn’t have my other commitments… :)

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6 responses

5 03 2009
Anuta

Noo!!! Come back!! Dont stay in Tajikistan!! If you really want to do some laundy, you can do ours =)

5 03 2009
S.

She wanted you to stay because of that? no… You can’t stay there, although it is a very bright idea to open a type of business where there aren’t any.

6 03 2009
Andrey

What other commitments? Nonsense. Boba, this is the opportunity you’ve been waiting for! Very much your type of work. I think you could end up doing it for the rest of your life! Financially you’ll be all set and since this is likely to be a coin operated one, your IT experience will be invaluable :)

6 03 2009
Borya

Hi S :),

It is a bright idea indeed… but maybe I’ll pass :) Are there laundry’s in Bishkek?

Andruha,

I’ll only do it if you join me as a partner! And yes, my IT experience is very handy with coin operating machinery. Are they PHP based?

And Anuta,

It’s a very kind offer. Really. :)

6 03 2009
Frances

For once I totally agree with Andrey. What other commitments? This is a golden opportunity not just to use your IT and organizational skills, but also to become famous as the man who led the movement towards cleanliness and sanitation. First laundromats, second more than one towel in bathrooms, and a bottle of hand sanitizer in every pot (or was that a chicken in every pot?)! The entrepreneur in you cries out for recognition … don’t ignore it. Hehehe … are you beginning to wonder why it is your old compadres in the business who push for you to settle in Tajikistan? :) Oh yes, you might want to remind your boss about the lack of reliable electricity and how that may impact the popularity of a laundromat.

16 03 2009
RobC

Boris – I noted the same thing up in Khujand and have the recurring back pain from doing hand wash over the tub to prove it! The really fun part is reeling in your frozen solid jeans from hanging out on the line in sub-freezing weather.

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