And most people have taken my advice. We did have some friends come visit that we met almost twelve years ago during our first stint in Cairo. They came from their current post, Moscow, with their three boys for a long weekend and were rewarded with horrible sickness almost as soon as they got here. Every single one, all five of them, came down with GI issues during the four days they were here. Like I said, you really don't actually want to visit Dushanbe.
My parents, however, did not heed my advice, and came to visit anyway. They got back from a three-year mission in the mountains of Peru last summer, so that must have helped them out because nobody got sick the entire visit. And they flew on Turkish without a single delay. It was a miracle.
While they were here, we:
Went to the local Olympic training park,
took a walk in our neighborhood,
had a picnic at the botanical garden (and had to walk home in the rain),
visited Hisor and had Hisor chicken (and didn't get sick!),
watched the children play in the yard,
braved their lives on a rickety platform (held in place with a few boulders) overlooking a 115-ft waterfall,
had a picnic at Iskanderkul,
took a tour of the national tea house,
and the national antiquities museum,
celebrated Sophia's birthday,
helped out around the house and yard (including fixing two ottomans and Eleanor's tricycle),
went out to eat several times (and still didn't get sick!),
went to the amusement park,
went swimming multiple times,
and had dinner at my housekeeper's house (and still no sickness. These people are amazing).
After two weeks they went home claiming to have had a fun time with all the delights that Tajikistan had to offer. The children enjoyed spending more time with their grandparents, and I had a great time with my parents. The children declared this year 'grandparent year' as they will get to see their grandparents three different times.
I'm grateful for my parent's visit and now we can put away the nice new guest linens that I bought for their visit because I'm pretty sure they are the last guests that will come visit us in Dushanbe. But, it was fun while it lasted!