More pictures!

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Mosque being refurbished in front of the unfinished ministry of religion (has been sitting there for 10+ years).  This is at Sahat Marjet (Martyrs Square), a major hub near just west of the old city.

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Horsie!!! Ive seen quite a few ponies like this one, mostly pulling carts piled with potatoes or watermelon.  They wear very fancy, jingly harnesses and I wonder how in the world they keep from getting run over by the crazy traffic.  Apparently it all works out, since I haven’t seen any roadkill horses around.

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A beautiful shaded street in the Old city, shops on either side and sun shining down through the grape vines growing above.

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A fruit and nut seller in Souq Al-Hammidiyya.  There are many many shops like this one with piles of dates, nuts, spices, herbs, and the like sitting in neat rows.  Feel free to try stuff before buying it, and if you stay long enough the shop keeper will invite you to have some tea.

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The, apparently, Syrian version of an apothecary.  If you look closely, those are dried alligators, lizards, various fish and other animal body parts handing from the ceiling.  I’ve seen a few with wild cat pelts (not sure what kind, but definitely something that they would confiscate at customs when I came back, or I would buy them in a heartbeat!), stuffed animals, turtle shells, hooves, horns, and all kinds of stuff.  I have no idea what they use it all for.

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Another shop, full of yummy nuts, and sporting the ever present picture of Syria’s dictator (oops, I mean president) Bashar al-Assad.  Every one in three shops has a picture of him somewhere, and you’ll still see a few pictures of his dad, Hafez al-Assad, too.  I’ve been wondering where in the world they get all these posters, you’d think they’d be selling them on the street like crazy, but apparently it isn’t a big money maker (wonder why?).

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A street in the Old city.  this is actually a fairly large street compared to most.  Some of them two people can barely pass each other.  It is hysterical watching cars trying to squeeze through these streets.

Ok, that’s all for now, more to come later.  But class starts tomorrow and I have no idea what the workload will be like, so be patient with me.  Love you all, and I’m having the time of my life.

Lydia

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