Exploring Morocco (3)

Enjoying local food at Morocco. This is the most reputed traditional restaurant in Rabat. Exotic dining experience accompanied by local music. The aged man in the last picture is in charge of leading the way for customers, with a lantern in his hand; it is because the restaurant resides deep into a lane, which makes it very difficult for new customers to find. The way they make tea reminds me of Sichuan Restaurant. Oh, and their chicken tastes great!

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One thing special about Morocco is the assorted styles of slippers. They all seem to enjoy walking in slippers. The dresses are styles of local ethnic groups. And the mask reminds me of the Nuo drama in China, but it seems like their designs of mask are more succinct.

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Natural dyes made from plants

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Remember the Turkish lamps? Well, Morocco also produces large amounts of beautiful lamps. This is how the lamps look like before they are decorated. Making lamps is an important skill in Morocco, and it is a very useful skill in especially in home textile industry. That’s why so many people making a living making lamps!

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A glance at local people’s life. It really looks like Xinjiang for a moment.

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Exploring Morocco (2)

A “blue town” in Rabat! The navy blue and snowy white worked perfectly together and created a breathtaking scenery. With little influence from the outside world, this town has kept medieval styles and traditions in some ways. The meandering lanes leads me toward tranquility, allowing me to escape from the noises and crowds in the city. I sauntered along the lanes, and ran into an aged Muslin man with long beard – oh how I enjoyed this small town!
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The Moroccan people attach great importance to the decoration of their doors, the same way Chinese people do to the decoration of their house. To the Moroccans, it’s ok to have an ordinary-looking house, except for the door! Almost every door I saw was well designed and decorated.
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While the European and American girls usually prefer to have a tattoo on their body, the Moroccan girls prefer to decorate their hands~~
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Enchanting were the nights in Rabat. Under the dim street lamp, I wandered along the quiet lanes; an aged Muslin man walked by, and occasionally a few boys ran by, playing soccer. I felt like I took one step into quietness, another step into noisiness; one into history, another into modern society; one into ethnic features, another into fashionable elements…… Finally I reached the center of the city square, a world bustling with excitement, and I was surrounded by crowds and noises.
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Exploring Morocco (1)

Morocco is a relatively conservative country in the Muslin world. When we were sauntering on the streets at night, we surprisingly found that only men were enjoying a cup of tea and chatting with each other in the square. We felt hundreds of eyes staring at us as we passed by, and it just made all of us so uneasy……

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Morocco international bazaar, which reminded me of the Yiwu Small Commodities Market in China. To any outsider, it seemed to be a messy place; to the peddlers, they were quite used to this world full of diverse languages, skin colors and odors. A noisy and colorful world. I was most impressed with the embroidered slippers made of artificial leather and the concave leathered cushion, because I found them in almost every shop. Do you know what they are for?

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Rabat is the capital city of Morocco. I enjoyed walking along these lanes with bolarious walls on their sides~ Just watching a ray of sunshine over the top of the walls, as a veiled woman in grey robe walked by…… so tranquil, heartwarming, and exotic.

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There is no luxurious hotel in the city; rather, it’s most famous for the home stays — small but fragrant places. Morocco was once a French colony, so there are many descendants of French people in the country.

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My Trip to Turkey (7)

A real show of world diversity — dresses from around the world! It is not about having silky skin or attractive figure; the happiness I see in these people has already taken over me!

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The world is losing its diversity… wherever I go, I feel like all the countries and the people of those countries are feeling more and more insecure. The young generation knows little about books and pens because they are born into an age of electronic products; the rich gets richer and the poor only gets poorer; every single day we have access to tons of information, but it becomes harder to learn the truth. In the meantime, we always want to be special and try as hard as we can to show our personalities. The world is become homogenized AND diversified at the same time……

 

The cities biding for the next International Conference of University Women include South Africa, Egypt and India. All of them sound appealing, but it seems like some people are concerned with safety issues. Where do you prefer to see the next conference held?

My Trip to Turkey (6)

The best carpet shop in Turkey! Turkish carpets are better than Chinese and Indian ones in several ways: they use double thread to make it tighter, and the pigments are more ecological (made from plants and insects). Reasonable price, wonderful quality, and exquisite designs. The price ranges from 1,000 to 1,0000 Yuan! (high-end products indeed!)

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Multi-color and multi-pattern in Turkish lamps and plates! Great handmade stuff and reasonable prices!117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126

 

First time to see a man performing belly dance. Complicated feelings…… but he did a great job (not flamboyant at all lol)! and here are the girl dancers. It is not easy to make a living as a dancer. They are really sweating away at their job, and they still keep up the smiles after one hour of intensive performing!

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The local tour guide told me that he was the best artist on this pedestrian street. Every time I see an old man performing by the street, I can’t help wondering: where do you come from? where are your family? and why did you end up here?

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My Trip to Turkey (5)

The most well-known painting in Turkey. Guess what’s the guy doing? He was a slave and was made to train the tortoise as a punishment! lol

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Can you tell the differences between Mosque, Catholic church and Orthodox church? Well, the most typical feature of mosque is the hammer-vault roofing, while on the top of a Christian church is a cross. But the cross varies between Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant church. If you look inside, you will find seats in Christian churches while in a Mosque, the space is more like a square on which people can worship on their knees. The walls of a Mosque are decorated with flowery tiles, while in a Christian church, you will find more paintings and sculptures as decorations.

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The smaller ones are about 60 Yuan, and the bigger ones are about 400 Yuan~

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In Turkey, if you collect 1,000 plastic bottle tops, you can get a wheelchair in exchange. A new way of practicing philanthropy!

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My Trip to Turkey (4)

Accompanied by a Catholic Mexican and a Muslin tour guide when visiting the mosque. Just learned that the Muslin also believes Jesus is the Messiah, who was crucified but rose again. But to the Muslin, Jesus is just a prophet. So mysterious is the God to us, but I know that he does exist!

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How do you compliment women on their beauty in Turkey? “Your eyes are as beautiful as donkeys!” To Turkish people, the donkey eyes look adorable, but I never noticed until the tour guide told me about it! However, if you say something like that in China and Mexican, you will probably be slapped…… lol

 

The Turkish just love candies! All sorts of candies! And they are not so expensive compared with those in China — the price of a whole package is around 50 to 60 Yuan.

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Turkish architecture set their foundation on the protection of tradition and history. Why are there so many Asian skyscrapers trying to top the rest of the world? As a matter of fact, skyscrapers are not so common in developed countries

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Drinking Turkish coffee with an Indian couple and a local tour guide. It was the first time that I learned mugs can be used for fortune telling after you have finished drinking the coffee, which is a quite prevalent activity in Turkey. What’s unusual about the Turkish coffee is the thick “juice” at the bottom, which is not potable. Pour the leftover onto the plate, wait until it’s fully cooled down, and see the pattern that coffee left on your mug. The pattern around the rim of a mug predicts the future, the pattern in the middle represent your present, and the pattern at the bottom tells about your past. As for the meaning of patterns, trees signify wealth, snakes signify cunningness, cats signify an unwillingness to change. So many wonders in the world! haha

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The handicrafts in Turkey are exquisite! Especially those decorations for lamps — so beautifully designed. Do you think they will be also be popular in China?

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My Trip to Turkey (3)

When we were at the table, a westerner noticed us, a group of Asians sitting together, so she came over and said hi in Japanese. We told her that we were from China, and she apologized, saying that she couldn’t really tell the difference between Chinese, Korean and Japanese people by just looking at them. “That’s alright,” I said, “the same way we Asians can’t really tell the difference between Italians, Spaniards, Germans and the Dutch. Although we live in an age of globalization and information, so little do we know about each other. “The Westerners” seems to be just one ethnic group in our eyes, just like “The Easterners” are the same group of people in western eyes. But the fact is, the Canadians hate to be mistaken for Americans, New Zealanders hate to be mistaken for Australians, and the Dutch hate to be mistaken for Germans.

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Tasty Turkish food ! ~

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Just learned it is a government demand in Turkey that all married women must have at least three children. What’s wrong with the world? Some governments say that women must have more children while some others say that they can’t have more than one. Do they think women are just tools for reproduction? Ridiculous.

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Turkish artworks and handicrafts! Those who are passionate about these artworks must also be passionate about their lives!

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Turkish public bathroom, which functions quite similar with Chinese karaoke bars. Being here is more about socializing rather than just bathing. In the bathroom, services such as professional massage and dancing performance are provided, so people can enjoy a bath, a nice massage, wonderful foods, and just watch the dancing performance. But how is it different from Chinese karaoke bars? Well, the Turkish bathroom definitely has different rooms for men and women! lol

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These prisons were first built in early 20th century, but in 1996 they were transformed into 5-star hotels! What we can learn from this is that you don’t have to destroy one thing in order to build something new upon it. Of all the cities I’ve been to around the world, Istanbul is the one that perfectly combines tradition and modernity. And the local tour guides are awesome too! Very well-grounded in introducing the history, geography, culture and local customs! Also, since tourism is the supporting industry in Turkey, one must have a license to become a tour guide.

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My Trip to Turkey (2)

The lady in blue is originally Yugoslavian, but migrated to Sweden in her early years. She was born on 3rd September, 1939, the beginning of WWII. A baby born in the gunfire! When she was 3, her parents were sent into jail for being reported as communists, so she and her sister were sent to live in orphanage. Fear contributed to her ear infection, but she still learned seven languages by reading lips! And she even became a professional language instructor!

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Synagogue of the Jew. The Jewish people suffered a lot in the history for being repressed and demobilized. But under the rule of Ottoman Turks, the Jews were welcomed into the country, and they contributed a lot to the development of the country. Yet today the number of Jewish people in Turkey is no more than 25,000, and they reside in a relatively hermetic community. The Jews remain a mysterious group of people to outsiders.

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Dresses of different ethnic groups from around the world! Haha now I’ve got more materials to show in my lectures!

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My Trip to Turkey (1)

Arrived in Turkey on 16th August! I feel so grateful for His grace.
Both traditional and modern features can be found on the streets in Turkey. BTW, even CCTV4 can be found on local television!

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Surprising things at the International Conference of University Women: most attendees were in their 60s to 80s, and young women were rare to be seen; Secondly, attendees came from a wide range of backgrounds, including European, American, African, Latin American, Indian, Turkish, and even Afghan, but I saw few Arabic women and there is no representativefrom mainland China. I attended the conference as a representative of Hong Kong. What are the reasons behind these two phenomena?

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Marvelous Turkish patterns are everywhere~ Tablecloth, couch, plate, carpet……

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Wonderful Turkish innovations! Guess what are these?

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Turkey is a country that bridges two continents. Here, the conservative Muslin traditions and forward European styles co-exist. Just look at the fashionable women in Turkey! It is noteworthy that the Muslin women in Turkey look more trendy than most women in other Muslin countries, and their choose fabrics and colors of their clothes from a wider range. Most Muslin women in other countries use a black veil to cover their faces.
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Traditional art in Turkey. All the artworks on paper has a history of around 200 years……
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