Friday, 15 December 2017

My 12 day stay in Isfahan - Day 2 (afternoon cont.) - Isfahan - Naghsh Jahan square; dinner making - The 28th of November 2017


I continued making my way towards the Naghsh Jahan square, which irrespective of the time of day is an absolute beauty to look at.

Saba and I took to the kitchen and though I was a mere observer of what she was preparing for our dinner I took down notes and photos of the ingredients and sequencial steps taken to make the delicious soup we later had.

It had been a long "walking" day but I felt particularly happy by the end of the day as I went to bed. Because of a programmed early circuit to Kashan the following day I had to have an equally early evening. Temperatures had dropped so abruptly that I felt really cosy under the soft bed cover as I prepared myself to get a good night's sleep. 


My 12 day stay in Isfahan - Day 2 (afternoon) - Isfahan - Khaju bridge - The 28th of November 2017

Upon having left the Museum of Music and believing the Khaju bridge wasn't too far I ventured into some inner streets following the city map till I could no longer feel my feet. Over the last two days I had learned that  unless I was physically prepared (and I wasn't sure I was), walking distances could turn into stretches of "undiscovered" territory I might have difficulty to cover.

Having sluice gates under the archways over the river, the Khaju bridge is said to regulate the water flow, serving therefore as more than a simply beautiful bridge, by which city dwellers relax. I did remember having seen it back in 2014 and been impressed by its vaults, its pavillions and above all the voices of the old men who often come and stand underneath its archs chanting and enchanting everyone who stops to listen to them.

After having sat for half an hour listening to two old men singing languorously sad traditional songs I decided to make my way back into the Iman square quarter I was living in. Upon having gone across from one of the bridge entrances into a huge square a rather unique statue caught my attention - a hand holding a dandillion. I couldn't help thinking about its symbolism - the ability to rise above life's challenges.

It was under that spirit that I walked the next one hour and a half till I reached my destination.


Thursday, 14 December 2017

My 12 day stay in Isfahan - Day 2 (late morning and early afternoon) - Isfahan Museum of Music - The 28th of November 2017

Soon after having left the Holy Bethlehem Church I walked back to the New Julfa square to relax for a while before walking into a local shop, where I bought two rather exquisite coats, one of which of Nomadic origin.

I made it to the Museum of Music still located in the Armenian quarter, where I spent a great part of the late morning and afternoon. Funded by two local musicians it showcases around 300 traditional instruments, which range from both National to regional ones.  I was introduced several instruments I had never seen before by a local guide, who not only was very enthusiastic to impart his musical knowledge but also sufficiently patient to answer all my questions. Apart from the exhibition halls there were two small rooms with pictures of some of the outstanding Iranian musicians, and specifically those from Isfahan, as well as a small section for International instruments.

Any visitor is entitled to a live musical performance in a rather well decorated and cosy looking room, but because it was very close to lunch time I was kindly asked to come back a few hours later using the same ticket.

I sat in the outside CafĂ© for about half an hour having a cinnamon tea and looking around the small gift shop.