Today was an up and down day. We are 3 weeks into our travels and the kids are feeling homesick. The food is different, they miss their friends, sleeping in their own beds and especially their dad. It is hard and disorienting to not be able to read anything or understand anything being said around you. I'm trying to channel extra grace and compassion but as the children have pointed out I sometimes fall short.
We went back to the marketplace, ate lunch, stopped at the grocery store and returned to the apartment.
Det55 and I went out again later to walk around. We saw a sword fighting demonstration that was kind of boring because they were demonstrating technique and rather than letting them sword fight and then talking about technique. There are street performers and musicians all over town. We stopped and listened to a rather lively band. We enjoyed it so much we bought a cd of their music.
I made hamburgers and fries for dinner. The kids did various things before getting ready for bed. At midnight the drummers across the street were going strong, occasionally joined by bagpipes. I think we all will be tired tomorrow.
I've been trying to think of how to describe this place. Imagine a town of stone buildings that are generally 5 stories tall with big wooden shutters over the windows. Insert several narrow cobblestone lanes and alleyways. Now layer banners and flags all over along with lots of flower boxes filled with beautiful flowers. Add music - flutes, festival music, sometimes drumming, occasionally bagpipes. Imagine lively conversations in different languages (very, very little of it English). Lastly, populate it with thousands of people in period costumes of all types. The number of people in costume vastly outnumber those of us not in costume. Whole families are dressed up, moms dads, teens, 20 somethings, grandparents, kids, babies. Add perfect weather- sunny, fluffy white clouds, cool temps. For spice put outdoor food stalls with all kinds of foods for sale. This place knows how to throw a party.
Here are some pictures: