Mosque and wandering in old town

IMG_8669We had a breakfast above expectations but the bathroom were stinking so we decided to scout for alternative hotels. Since we were lazy we started with the hotel one floor above which had much cleaner and nicer rooms. Said and done.

On the way to old town we asked for directions when a young man clad in white explained he was heading the same way. He started to chat and it ended up that he gave us his contact information if we needed any help or so while in Syria when we parted.

Since it was Friday most of the shops were unfortunately closed but it was still impressive to wander around, and some shops were still open. We walked “Straight Street” and since we’re talking Damascus the old town is quite old. This street is mentioned in the old testament.

After a lunch-break we were still strolling around when I was struck by a sign of luck, or at least considered to be so in Croatia, a foul bird had defecated right in my head. Mirsada was laughing uncontrollable before helping me to wash my hair.

IMG_8673The Umayyad Mosque lies within the old town and has been the place of religious worshop for some 3000 years. It started with a Aramean temple for the god Hadad, the romans used it for Jupiter before going christian and then switch to John the baptist. The moslems kicked out the christians around 700 AD and since then it have been a holy place seconded only to the holy mosques in Mekka and Medina.



IMG_8661Islam seems to take it way more lightly in how to behave in their religious buildings than e.g. christians. Kids were playing around and people were generally slacking, only the required covering clothes and forbidden footwear was a give-away of the holiness of the mosque.
IMG_8692After a dose of culture it was time to entertain our sugar cravings and we had tried some really nice ice-creams. The place was very popular and we will try to go back here tomorrow. Well fed we started to walk towards the hotel and of course we ended up taking a taxi in the end when not knowing where we were.

The taxi driver drove for about 3 minutes when Mirsada thought she recognized the streets and asked the startled driver to stop. We got off and actually did not recognize us when the taxi had speeded off. Some walking in the direction of the cab brought us to a landmark however and we could walk the last bit.

Being rather tired from all the walking we were close to just fall asleep but we thought that at least we should go out and get a milkshake in central Damascus. We found a street stall quite soon, gulped down the awesome milkshakes and scurried back before the sugar-coma would hit us. A well needed shower and some reading we fell asleep.