Still in Yadz:
We walked thru the bazaar visiting the famous gallery of Mustafa and son Ali Fotowat miniature artworks. A great pleasure and honor to meet them both and see Mustafa at work!
Our lunch was at Bastini Traditional Restaurant in the bazaar
...a huge place with tons of Iranians having their main meal of the day. After a long afternoon rest we headed for the Zayandi River and the famous bridges which cross it. In the eve we continued our walk in the bazaar stopping at several carpet shops.
After wishing James (UK guy) a happy 30th B-day & saying goodbye, we were off to the Chakhmagh SqWiki Info Yazd
where we were able to convince the old man at the ticket booth to unlock the door to the part of mosque under construction. Good overview and then to the Water Museum which used to be a merchant's home. Lastly, a stroll thru the gold bazaar,( lots of black cloaked women window shopping) where at one point we were passing a group of women with a small girl in tow eating an ice cream cone. Bon looked down and said quietly "You're dripping" at which the little girl looked up at Bon and began screaming, just totally terrified! It was so shocking we quickly moved on in total disbelief. Later we had a great laugh about it. lots of black cloaked women window shopping. Wiki Info Isfahan
Now after lunch we sit and wait til bus leaves at 3:45 for 4 hour ride Esfahan! Most of the countryside is flat, barren, and dry with almost no vegitation. We don't even see any oasis or irrigated land yet every once in a while a dwelling and buildings pop up far off the road. Can't really believe anyone lives there though, at least not anymore! After a long taxi ride thru Esfahan ( and, as usual, tons of traffic) we arrive and check in at Setareh Hotel
, (near Naghsh-e-jahan Sq. wherever that is) several stars higher than our hotel in Jazd. But being higher up the scale you are isolated from guests as well, the hotel in Yazd was more like a hostel.
Our LP maps on the Kindle are useless since they are not expandable and print is tiny. Finding maps of local towns is not hard but they are always huge and unwieldy. Only found one good map of all of Iran but again, huge and impractical. So we forge on following our trusty guide, Mehdi, completely unaware of our location in relationship to our surroundings, ha! For me it is not so much a problem since that's the way I usually travel with Bon, a bit blind/in a fog so to speak. Not something I recommend but the reality for me since I've given up trying to know which direction we should be going. If pressed I'm usually180° off which Bon will use if she is in doubt, asking me which way I chose and then we head off opposite!
I don't really understand how I can be so consistently off, and actually, I really wish I knew the answer. But as long as we end up where we're supposed to be, I shall not bother exploring the question further.
Begin another tour day, now in Esfahan...we had a breakfast like the buffets in UAE with eggs, yogurt, cereal, bread, all kinds of jam and chez, even sliced meat in addition to the usual tomato-cucumber slices, 3 kinds of juice and tea or coffee! Headed for the Naghsh-e-jahan Square, NOW I know what this square is, ha! The 2nd largest public square in the world after Tiananmen Sq in China. During it's long history since 1600 century it has been used for polo games, military parades, horse/camel races, festival grounds, and now a public park. Around it's perimeter are the sights we visited this a.m. constructed over a period of 26 years (1602+) =Ali (magnificent) Qapu (entrance or gate) Palace (1597-1603) by Shah Abbas I when Isfahan was chosen capital over Gazvin. Continual additions added in stages by successive rulers made it the highest building in Isfahan during the Safavid era. Next we visited the She-ie-kh Lutfullah Mosque or Royal Mosque, a huge beautiful, double dome allowing echoes to be heard...representing the acts which you do today will return to you tomorrow. The tile work both 7 colored square and inlaid/faince mosaics were splendid, impossible to convey in pictures. And finally the 40 column palace (20 wooden columns reflected in the pool in front), a great masterpiece of artwork in itself.