Damascus, Syria, December 2008

I had a few months to spare and decided to try to work on my poor Arabic which I had acquired in Iraq.

My research narrowed my linguistic pursuit down to two areas: Yemen or Damascus.  I chose Damascus and had a great time.

Out side the gates of Damascus University
Out side the gates of Damascus University
My accommodation a tenement block in Mezze, west Damascus
My accommodation a tenement block in Mezze, west Damascus

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The company I chose to go with was called Arabesk, which was run by a Spanish born Syrian called Iskander. After a month of intensive schooling, Iskander said I was ready to attend the language school at Damascus University.

So, off I went. I lived with a Syrian family who tolerated my poor Arabic and strived with me to improve it.

I was able to travel around the country and visit some amazing archelogical sites. Bosra and its amazing Roman remains, The Crusader castle – Krak de Chevalier, the water wheels at Hama and, of course, the legendary Palmyra.

The huge spralling archeological site at Palmyra, eastern Syria.
The huge sprawling archeological site at Palmyra, eastern Syria.

I had a wonderful experience.  The hospitality was outstanding, the atmosphere enticing, and the relatively unspoilt history a true pleasure to experience.  Thanks to all that made it such a special time.

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