Strike three! The hotel manager slept in and didn’t give us our wake up call. Luckily the Wrestler’s overactive bladder had him up at 7:30. We both had quick showers and were ready to go at 8:10. “Time for breakfast!” my guide said. “Dude, we have to be in the taxi in 20 minutes and haven’t even seen the Jameh Mosque. Screw breakfast.” And then came the infamous Iranian line, “Don’t worry! We have time!” Christ!
So I decided in the meantime I would go and try to buy some new batteries and get ready for shooting the mosque. This time I was sure to get Iranian ones as opposed to all the crappy Chinese ones I had been using until now. I bought some that had the word “Japan” on the side hoping for the best. As soon as I got back tot he caravanserais I popped them in the camera. The ubiquitous “Please change battery pack” message didn’t show up this time... in fact, it COULDN’T show up. These were the crappiest set yet! They couldn’t even give enough power to tell me they weren’t powerful enough!
Back in the caravanserais I ate a bit but not too much since I was thoroughly pissed off at all the lateness and terrible batteries. The Wrestler finished up quick and we went to the Jameh Mosque, a massive beautiful structure that was empty of people. I couldn’t even take one picture. We were there for only 5 minutes then it was into the taxi and too the bus.
On the bus I busted out my laptop to watch a few episodes of 24. You see, they have movies on the bus, but unfortunately they are in Farsi, and unfortunately the sound is blasted on the internal PA system so you can’t even ignore the movie if you wanted to. So I got my headphones and plugged into my own entertainment, which I could barely hear over the blasting PA.
Sitting behind us was a family, but I couldn’t exactly make out who was who. It was either a father and two daughters, or a father, his young bride and a daughter. I thought they may have been Afghani since they spoke Farsi quite well, but the Wrestler couldn’t understand them when they spoke among themselves. I suppose they could’ve been Pashtun, but the women were wearing Indian style saris, so I guess they could have been from Pakistan. The older daughter/wife had the most amazing gray eyes. She was quite pretty and I kept looking over, trying to figure out where they came from, and would catch her looking over at me, probably trying to figure out where the hell I came from.
The bus driver drove like a grandma, had the heater turned on full-blast, and got stopped by the police and fined three times. Needless to say everyone on the bus was getting a little pissed off. We ended up being about an hour late.
Tourism in Esfahan
Once off the bus we found a taxi driver right away. - HIstory of Armenians - Oldest biggest mosque - Khomeini, Shah’s, and Naghsh-e Jahan Square - searching for hotels - the bridge - the Abbas hotel
Vank Cathedral, built 1606-1655
Entrance to the Sheik Lotfollah Mosque
Inside the Sheik Lotfollah Mosque
Arabic calligraphy inside the Sheik Lotfollah Mosque
Dome of the Emam Mosque
Bridge of 33 Arches, connecting the Armenian quarter to the rest of Esfahan