After going to the famous fish market in Hodeida and wandering the souqs and eating the second best meal in Yemen….grilled fish and cheese sauce and bread fresh from the hot oven where the fish are grilled I took a share taxi to Zabid which has been given a UNESCO designation.
I arrived around 1pm and after checking into the New Zabid Tourist Hotel (2000 rial) for a room with tv/and a/c but no hot water. From my hotel I went into the old city and starting taking pictures of the mosques and old buildings and before you know I was invited into a house and then another fellow (Ramses) invited me into their family home…these are amazing homes..very old and ornate with carvings and ornate doors and rooms with elevated chairs for lounging and chewing Qat and smoking the water pipe…and on and on and on…and then Ramses zipped me around Zabid on his motorcycle from one amazing house to the next one…the guide book says you are lucky to get invited into a house and I must have been in about 10 or more and then…
I was invited into the women’s quarters where the women were chewing qat… it is supposed to give one more energy. One fellow likened it to Viagra. I cannot say. They were also smoking the water pipe and drinking tea and chatting on these high beds..a scene from Arabian Nights…all dressed in sheer gorgeous dresses with perfect makeup.
…I left Zabid to go to Mokha…the place of Mocha
Coffee..very glamorous..not…I arrived at the only hotel in town and it was full and was asked to wait in case someone checked out andindeed a nice man was checking out so I asked the price and they said 3000 Rial which is about 15 dollars…i said that is very expensive and the man said it is not worth 500 rial. I then asked about
getting back to Sana…and the man said he was going that way..so before I knew itI was in Taiz…which is not on my travel permission program…but what to do..hotel is full and no place to stay and it is too late to travel
all the way to Sana..another 5 hours…it would be dark and late when I arrived…not safe for a woman. So I stayed in the same hotel as
Mukthar (Captain) Director General of pilotage and Maritime Safety.
He was investigating a ship that sank last week Off Mokha.. So I saw Mokha,
it was not impressive and headed back to Sanna to plan phase 2 of
my trip and to do laundry and relax. Tiaz has some interesting things
to see but it is very noisy and a big city..without the charms of Sana.