Esfahan and Kashan
Trip Start May 30, 2011
34Trip End Feb 24, 2012
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In both these cities we reunite with our Iranian friend from Mashhad who has brought along an Australian couple to share the experience with us. We fill our days by wondering through the maze that is the Iranian bazaar, gawking at grand homes and sipping tea in the numerous and somewhat lavishly decorated tea houses
Alex and I arrived in Esfahan on New Year's Eve. Unfortunately for us, the arrival of 2012 was not much of a cause for celebration as the Iranian calendar is showing us that it is 1390 and New Year would not be until March! Despite this we celebrate the end of 2011 with a meal in a traditional tea house and a couple of non-alcoholic beers. Cheers! A few shopkeepers offer us a happy New Year gesture and apologise for the non-existent celebrations of the western New Year. Afterwards we retire to our hotel room and barely make it to midnight.
To celebrate my birthday 6 days after the New Year, Alex suggests to me that a Sutar would be an ideal birthday gift (a sutar being a traditional Iranian instrument that is shaped a little like a guitar, with four strings).We spend a night shopping around and finally settle on one with a nice design on the back. I practice playing it that night, although it is quite obvious on the first couple of strums that it will take me a lot of practice to get it to sound anything like it should. At any rate, it will look nice in our living room. The next day is my birthday, which we celebrate by spending most of the day on the bus to Shiraz, our next stop. That morning, I was treated to a rendition of 'Happy Birthday’ from Alex. A singing career may not be looming on the horizon!