Monday, November 19, 2012

The Spice Souk



A left hand turn out of the gold souk, and walking 2 more blocks Greg led us to the spice souk.  I didn’t have a camera with me.  I didn’t need one.  My eyes seemed to be taking in frame after the frame.  The size of the bags of spices, the way the shelves were stocked, the floor space of each store, the call, “Saffron, saffron, I have good saffron, no charge for looking” each would say as we walked down the narrow lanes. 

Now we walked down the narrower streets that tapered into closed spaces  Men were walking in and out of the mosque on the side of one street, slipping their shoes off as they entered.  I was aware of the piles of hundreds of shoes in its doorway, and wondered how finding the right shoes on exiting was done so seamlessly.

When we were a long way back in the spice souk Wyona asked about a bangled head dress.  The clerk outside tried sign language with her, and then signalled for her to wait, while he went inside to get someone to speak English with her.  We have seen shops like this in Rome – side streets where the wholesaler has his goods, and when you are looking for bangles to buy by the dozens.

The next day I was telling Greg that if we went back, I would like more time in the spice souk.  As we left I noticed the large box of cocoanut shells used for a quick drink.  Just a hole poked in the cocoanut, a straw inserted.  I wanted to try one, but the idea of negotiating a price for it was too much for me, late at night.

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