Archive for the ‘cycling’ Category
I went to a Zurkhaneh session in the town of Ardabil a few nites back. Zurkhaneh is an ancient ritual which i can best describe as a cross between whirling dervish, mosque prayer, aerobics, and weight lifting. I am happy that the elders let me watch as an “honorary male” ; ) It was captivating & the participants & old men with tea (above pic) were charming hosts. Here is he Wikipedia low-down on Zurkhaneh & one of my brief videos to follow. Enjoy!
The Varzesh-e Pahlavani rituals mimic the rituals and traditions of Sufi orders, as evidenced by terminology like murshed “master” (beating the drum and reciting poetry), pish kesvat “leader”, taj “crown” or faqr “poverty”. The ethics involved are also similar to Sufi ideals, emphasizing purity of heart. Every session begins with pious praise of prophet and his family. In less religion-oriented Zurkhanehs, these elements are replaced by the recital of stories from Iranian mythology, such as those of the Shahnameh.
The main part of a Varzesh-e Pahlavani session is dedicated to gymnastics or calisthenics, notably using a pair of wooden clubs (mil) and metal shields (sang), and bow-shaped iron weights (‘kaman). The exercises also involve acrobatics like Sufi whirling and juggling. The sessions end with submission wrestling known as the Koshti Pahlavani
I am up in Tabriz, near the borders of Turkey, Azerbaijan & Armenia. The people here are Azari & speak a Turkish sort of Farsi The traffic is less hectic than in Tehran (see photo of Tabriz traffic & let me know what you think….) though i have travelled only by foot, bus & taxi in this city : ) Am headed to Kurdish area on border of Iraq next (by bus, don’t worry…). I hear the Kurds are even more hospitable- I do not know how that is possible! Not much time to blog these days- will make up for it later. Lots of Love, Michelle
this is my 1st time on broad band in the Islamic Repubic of Iran! I am downloading a few images/sound/video before i head off on bike tomorrow (in Sh’Allah!). Truth be told, i have done my best to download video & sound with no success. Even though I am at a 5 start hotel’s business center not having any luck with it, you just never know… i may get lucky on dial up in some teensy village in the mountains.
Posted on May 25th, 2008 by admin. Filed under cycling.
After much shopping around all sorts of SF bicycle shops, i finally stumbed into Roaring Mouse Cycles (www.roaringmousecycles.com) on Irving Street (@15th) in the inner Sunset on my lunch break one tuesday… What a dream. …Small shop, chock full of bikes, extremely knowledgable staff, & general good vibe. Chris Lane the British owner had experience travelling in Syria & other parts of the Middle East & also did some bike touring around (Eastern Europe I think).. I had tried the Surly Long Haul Trucker at other shops, but there was something about the other places that carried the Surly that i did not feel comfortable with. Or perhaps it is just because in comparison Chris & the team at RM are so damn good that everyone else looks pale in comparison? On that brief 30 minute lunch break, I decided that Roaring Mouse was finally the place I wanted to do buy my bike from. Although the LHT was not in stock there I felt very happy to pay extra is shipping to have it sent there– to buy from a team that I feel good working with, supporting with my business, and also being supported in return via their extensive knowledge and practical guidance. When the LHT came in Chris spent much time teaching me how to ride “clip-less” which is actually riding with those bike shoes that clip into the pedal- a daunting task to me– but after about 15 minutes riding on their trainer in the store, i was actually able to ride home all the way to mountainous pac heights without falling once… we’ll see how I do with that in Iran. I love the Roaring Mouse.. and my Surly Long Haul Trucker- a beautiful 26 pound sturdy STEEL bike.
- Some photos from Misrata… stories to follow.
- The Boat to Misrata (Libya): Men’s quarters vs. Women’s quarters
- Why I had to visit Misrata (Libya).
- Greetings from Benghazi, Libya
- Just another day in Cairo…