Diamonds, Relics and Turkish Baths
Trip Start Apr 19, 2010
46Trip End Jun 06, 2010
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Going inside you will hear an imam reading/singing verses of the Quran. They have been doing so for 24 hours a day nonstop since the 16th century. It is very moving and I saw some women in tears hearing the verses. On display are a variety of locks and keys for the Kaaba -- the holiest of Muslim shrines, the big black cube in the centre of the mosque at Mecca. Also on display is a footprint of Muhammad, plus hair from his beard, his tooth, letters he wrote and other relics
The palace has a treasury that has on display a 86 carat diamond in the shape of a pearl, named the Spoonmaker diamond. The story of the diamond reports that a poor man found the rocks in a trash heap and sold it to a spoon maker for some wooden spoons. He in turn, sold it to a jeweller for 10 silver coins. No one quite knows how the sultan got his hand on the diamond but there it is in the treasury.
We stopped for refreshments in the cafe in the palace and paid royally for the privilege. It was nice to sit and enjoy the view with the drinks.
After the palace, I, as your loyal correspondent, returned to the hotel to toil over the official records of our adventure while Jacqui decided to partake of a Turkish bath. One look at the brochure frightened me away. Imagine me in a hot, humid bath, naked, with a imposing large Turkish man washing my armpits, shudder. I shall report on JB's adventure when she surfaces.
Jacqui has returned from the bath and fortunately no large Turkish men to wash her armpits, however, there were hairy large Turkish women to perform the task. She is all aglow, fully washed, pampered and massaged.