Posts Tagged ‘market


Day 32: This Little Piggy Went to the Market, pt.3

Non-Market #1: Lunch
We kill some time by eating lunch at a local favorite restaurant and try the delicious spicy chicken soup that we were hearing is so delicious and spicy. We spend a few hours of decadence back at our fancy, resort-like hotel (thank you, off season!) drinking a few beers on the upper patio, watching the sand duneyness of the sand dunes, reading novels, writing in our journals.  Spoiled.

Non-Market #2: Apakh Hoja Tomb
A few miles outside of the city is a tomb compound for some seventeenth century rulers of Kashgar. Gorgeous, vivid ceramic tiles abound. The most interesting tomb, for both aesthetic and comedic reasons, belongs to Yiparhan, whose name translates to “Fragrant Maid.” The tomb, dubbed “The Fragrant Concubine Tomb” (or, as the sign actually reads, ‘The Fregrant Comcubine Tomb,’) describes the history: “. . . in fact Fragranf Concub-ine is a true lady in history who was called fragrant maid, Apakh Hojia’ sgreat grandneice for her exceptional bodily aroma since her childhood.” So, I guess “exceptional bodily aroma” is something they celebrated back then.

apakh hoja mazar

Vivid and Decaying.  Love it.

apakh hoja

Decay and Doors.  Love it.

Fragrant  Concubine Tomb

Looooove it.

apakh hoja

Moody Columns

apakh hoja

Tile Palette

abakh khoja tomb

Tile Perspective

apakh hoja

Domes and Crescents

apakh hoja tomb

Haunted Tomb

Market #3: Occurring at Night
Smoke from sidewalk barbecues wafts away to reveal backlit tables crowded with locals eating dinner along the streets. The chicken kabobs are delicious; the lamb kabobs, not so much. We find some frozen yogurt that doesn’t suck entirely.

kashgar night market

Like a capture from a Hitchcock movie.

night market

Dinner Table

outside id kah

Id Kah Square

Outside the Id Kah mosque square sit Cinderella princess carriages, souvenir booths, and sharply dressed camels. When we walk by, the men are surely disappointed that we do not want to take pictures. After all, we are their target audience. Actually, I do want to take pictures, but this is one of those times when the self-righteous, experienced world traveler inside me drowns out the inner child shouting “Look! CAMELS!!!!” and so I refuse to fill that tourist stereotype.

tourist trap

I really want to climb up on that sophisticated camel and get a picture, but we have plans to see more camels soon enough.  So I shall wait.


Day 32: This Little Piggy Went to the Market, pt.2

Market #2: Of the Sunday Variety
Outdoors it is like a huge swap meet where you can sort through mountains of mismatched shoes at your leisure, and inside are aisles and aisles of booths selling spices, nuts, brass lamps, wooden boxes, scarves, and bolts of vivid, wild traditional fabric. Sam and I decide we need to buy even more scarves, so we spend quite a bit of time allowing a cute little Uyghur salesboy try to charm us with his smile while his zipper is down.

kashgar sunday market

See him standing on the right?  His zipper is down.

sunday market

Outside Market

old man at the sunday market

Man Outside the Market


Boys Inside the Market (once again, they loved to see their pictures on the review screen)

uyghur fabric

Traditional Uyghur Fabric

uyghur fabric

More Fabric

kashgar sunday market

Nut Booth

There is a pretty heinous bathroom at this market.  I stoop down really low to get under a rope holding a curtain and sort of side-step-scootch through a doorway, but in the process I can not avoid scraping my backpack and side against the filthy wall.  UGH.

There is not enough Purell to make me feel clean again.

Only time can heal this wound.


Day 32: This Little Piggy Went to the Market, pt.1

Market #1: Of and Concerning Animals
The animal market is acres of dirt filled with fur, hooves, and stench.  Donkeys, goats, horses, sheep, camels, cows, bulls; buying low, and selling high.

We learn that when a bunch of men try to “coax” an angry bull down from a tall truck bed by yanking on the bull’s ropes and dragging it forward, its hooves scraping desperately against the feces-covered metal surface, there is a moment before the bull’s forelegs hit the ground when you would swear it is going to flip forward and break it own neck; but instead it finds its footing, takes a beleaguered breath, and rampages in such a way that fear for our lives seems like the appropriate response.
animal market

animal market

I imagine the headline: “American Man, Reflexes Slowed by Life of Luxury and Excess, Gored by Livestock; Look of Embarrassment at Soiling Himself Frozen on Face.”

old man and donkey


When they aren’t looking and sounding ridiculous, there is something about donkeys that I find to be wise, handsome, and classy.







old beyond his years

(What sound does a camel make?)

(Plus, how much character does that little boy’s face have?)

jingle bells

Neigh (and Jingle)

animal market

“Come . . . ON, you . . . little . . . pieces of- . . . UNGH!”


Day 26: The Day of Cliché

All of our unplanned, haphazard, Sam’ll-handle-it traveling had been going swimmingly, but we finally hit a snag this morning.  We arrive back in China after the splendid overnight train from Shanghai and take a taxi straight to the Liyun Apartotels that were so good to us.  We explode into the lobby, a dust cloud of backpacks and random limbs.

But it’s booked solid.  Heave the bags backs on, down the street to cross on the overhead bridge, back up the street to try somewhere else.


Bags, bridge, try again.


Bags, taxi, try again.

We finally find a place that is somewhere that I cannot explain because I cannot explain where any place is in Beijing.

And so, forward with the Day of Cliché.



Day 13 part 2: Jokhang Temple

After Potala Palace we toured Jokhang Temple.  It is considered the most important temple in Tibetan Buddhism, so pilgrims from all over Tibet make the journey to Lhasa at least once in their lives to prostrate themselves here.  The pilgrimage itself must be back-breaking work, considering the Tibetan plateau is one of the most remote places in the world and not many can afford to make the trip in a 4-Runner.  So many people trek on foot, stopping along the way to meditate and pray.  The most devout will travel the last miles on their hands and knees and stomachs, performing prostrations by kneeling with their arms in the air then sliding their hands on the ground in front of them to lie flat.  What I would think of as an excruciatingly slow and painful ordeal, these pilgrims probably consider transcendent.

I’ve re-posted this picture because 1) I think it’s awesome, and 2) that white building on the left horizon is the temple.



Day 12: Ramoche Temple

For breakfast we went to the same place as dinner last night.  I could claim that the magical view of Jokhang drew us back,  but really is was the menu’s promise of pancakes that did us in.  Honey pancakes, maybe?  Or apple?  Anyway, this battle was over last night when we saw it on the menu.  We didn’t have a chance.

We sat next to this beautiful little girl and her family.  She was entranced with Sam’s unique and confusing combination of her vaguely ethnic Chinese appearance and her western clothing and obviously foreign counterparts.  The girl really could not take her eyes off  Sam.  Affording me the opportunity to steal some surreptitious just-gonna-set-this-camera-on-the-table-with-the-telephoto-lens-pointed-at-your-face-don’t-mind-me candid shots.

Sooooooooo much MORE!!! JumpJumpJump!


Day 10: Wandering the Streets of Lhasa

Potala Palace

Since we arrived in Lhasa several days before our tour is scheduled to start, and we can’t begin the tour now because we have to wait for one more person, we are going to spend several days just wandering around.  And since we have to be on a tour to even be here, and the tour company wants to get money for these days, we’re going to have our tour guide, Tsering, with us.  I guess.  I don’t really know what we’re gonna be doing.

More words! More Photos! JUMP!!

The very beginning:

Older Stuff

Flickr Photos

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