Travel Journal Overview: I arrived in Yazd not sure of what to expect. My new German travel mate was well behaved on the bus. Once we arrived, it all changed. Though, so did my travel. This was my last stop before Pakistan
Before the 5am alarm call I was already awake. I think Chicago was awake too. We were both experiencing that bite you get when you would both prefer to be heading in the same direction. More for the sake of companionship than anything else. She would be alone, and I for a change, would be with someone; albeit a seriously intense German lady. taking my guess I picked up my back back and in a hush tone said goodbye. Chicago turned over and we said the usual goodbye’s and good lucks before I headed out.
I waited for about 10 minutes before Christine appeared, wearing her typical multicolored headscarf and and for better word poncho. She was an intense as ever. I just smiled. Time to grin and bear it a little. We made it to the bus terminal with only a mild verbal assault on the taxi driver, I think Christine starts the day off lightly and slowly builds up. I nearly began to regret my pleas for a separate ticket to Christine once a large overweight man took up residence next to my seat. Promptly removing his shoes and placing his feet on the back of the seat in front while then falling asleep. I could have sworn he was hungover.
Again the scenery was full of dull monotones, dry earth, rustic settlements and low cropped brown mountains passed by. But the journey was not so long as we pulled into Yazd by 1.30pm. Already I was getting a good feeling about one of the oldest continually inhabited cities on earth.
We headed straight to the Silk Road Hotel, we’d both agreed it was the best option to try first. From the outside the hotel looked to be in a state of renovation. But once you walked down a few steps the full glory of a large beautiful open courtyard greeted you. A simple blue fountain formed the centerpiece and flowing out from the glistening water were subdued tiles that were shadowed by pleasant fauna. All around the edge of the courtyard were rustic wooden doors leading into rooms, and off to other corridors. A few tables and comfortable cushions benches lined the courtyard and to my surprise I saw evidence of over travelers there.
Christine immediately set about a verbal assault on a young attendant, demanding a room with a window from him. We were taken to have a look at a few rooms, but all had no windows to the outside, just to the courtyard. Not good enough for Christine. I asked separately and discovered they had dorm rooms for 40,000 as opposed to a single for 160,000. I took a look, and although the beds might as well not have any mattresses they were nearly all full. It meant there were travelers here. By the time I came back, a middle-aged English lady had appeared and was trying to calm Christine down a little. But my German companion was having none of it. She barked at the young attendant demanding to know if there were any other hotels nearby. A new face appeared. A shaven headed traveled in biker gear approached looking concerned. But upon seeing my head shaking as he approached, bid a hasty retreat back to a bench.
Christine had had enough of The Silk Road. She ordered the young attendant to mind out bags while she took the English lady by the arm and headed back outside to be shown a nearby hotel called the Orient. Again, the hotel failed to make the grade of having windows, and the patient English lady also bid a hasty retreat. I suggested we try one more hotel, the Kohan, and as we passed by the Silk Road again I saw the residents look at us walking by. I cringed as I could see they were figuring out, and making ill conceived notions of what our relationship was.
At the Kohan Christine found a near enough suitable room for 100,000. The hotel was large and quite well kept. But it was woefully empty. And although I was beginning to feel a sort of responsibility towards Christine, mainly in a medical way. I had made up my mind that I would be staying at the Silk Road. Christine looked to be happy with the Kohan, but hearing my decision, I prompted here to think about it at the Silk Road over lunch. She agreed.
The menu was as good as the food, and with that we had an excellent meal of beef with pomegranate and walnut(yes it was good). It was just after dinner that Ali the owner showed up, and yes he was immediately set upon my Christine who demanded to know why his rooms were so expensive. Keeping a calm head, Ali asked how much did Christine think a room was worth.
“70,000, no more!” stated Christine in a resolute huff.
Ali nodded, ”Ok, no problem, you can have it at that price”.
I looked on in amazement. Bloody hell, she just cut the price by over 60%. I needed some of that. I stepped forward and waved, “We arrived together, so that will be two rooms.”
Ali frown, paused, and then made be shudder, “You can share one room?”
Christine said nothing. I nearly balked. “Separate! Privacy needed!” Why were people making assumptions about me and a 60 year old German lady!!!
It seemed she had been listening after all. “Of course to separate rooms, he’s young enough to be my son, he needs his own space. And I will not share with anyone.”
Ali smiled in resignation. He knew what we all did.
I had just scored a room with a double bed, crisp white sheets, a bathroom with towels, Air conditioning and even chocolates on the pillows, all for 5 Euro! It was all because of Christine. And I began to re-evaluate this strange German lady. Was she really that strange, or did she really know what she was doing?
That night I struck of a friendship with the Biker guy from earlier, Paul from Ireland. He was doing a motorbike trip from Ireland to India/Nepal and was waiting for spare parts to arrive plus the arrival of two friends also on bikes from India.
Some related links from this website that you might like: (including a lot more photographs from Iran)
Stories: Feeling Low on the Road, in Iran
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