A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about tips and tricks

Muslim Kids

Growing up ain't easy

Child labour laws are a probably a funny joke here. The cities are full of little kids running around selling all kinds of wares, from bread to chewing gum, and the nargileh cafes are garrisoned by armies of shoe shine boys running around avoiding getting hit by the waiters. Today we talked to one of these boys, Riyaz, who was very happy to actually have a conversation, probably a rarity for him as the local just ignore them unless they actually want their shoes shined. He was terrified of the waiters and ducked under the table whenever they were nearby, as they dislike the boys loitering and smack them if they get in the way. We got him a coke, but had to insist it was for us as the waiter asked just to make sure wasn't for the little rascal. He drank it under the table, and was eternally grateful, coming to our table in between rounds of shining shoes and even gave us some popcorn.

When we were in Kayseri in Turkey, after being guided skillfully into a carpet shop, and having realized this leaving, we were given a boy to help us out and follow us around as it would help his English. This turned out to be a massive boon, as we were very tired having done a 1000+km hitch in the past 20 hours and hadn't slept much. He showed us where to go, brought us to tea houses and kebab shops, and generally helped out. The strange thing was, that this didn't surprise anyone, and the other people we ran into sort of expected him to do all this.

Posted by Nomadics 06:51 Archived in Syria Tagged tips_and_tricks

Caucasian Banter


View Kiev to Beirut on Nomadics's travel map.

In Georgia, people were pretty fervent at how terrible the Armenians are: "they always claim that everything, including Georgia, is theirs", when one of the boys was claiming how the wine was the best in the world, the others reminded his to be careful: he was beginning to sound like an Armenian.

2 days into Armenia we heard the other side from a fat farmer called Fyodor: In Armenia, they are cultured and civilised people, who like to help out foreigners, whearas we should watch out in Georgia and Azerbaijan, as our stuff will probably get stolen.

Posted by Nomadics 09:44 Archived in Armenia Tagged tips_and_tricks

Comic Interlude

Jokes from the Silk Road

Here are some random jokes we have heard so far. Don't hold your breath.

Turkey: (We actually heard no jokes, but this is the closest thing to it)

Practical joke: Guy runs in to the building and shouts "SALAAM ALEYKUM" as loud as he can. Everyone jumps, then laughs. (It means "peace be upon you"). Hur hur.

Iran: (Most Iranian humour is based on stereotypes of where people are from)

People from Qazvin are apparently all gay:
- In Qazvin, when people drop their wallets, they don't pick it up.
- Why does no one in Qazvin pass their exams?
They're too scared to pick up their exam papers.

People from Esfahan are stingy:
- When an Esfahani's house was on fire, he texted the fire department to call him back.
- When an Esfahani student's pen finishes, he graduates.

People from Rasht are promiscuous:
- When a Rashti's wife got pregnant, he went around and thanked the whole town.
(This joke is "very dirty" by Iranian standards...)

Thats about it.

Posted by Nomadics 09:00 Archived in Iran Tagged tips_and_tricks

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