Nov 14, 2020 in History

Lonely Planet
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Travel Diary

Throughout history, the world has changed increasingly, and it is always interesting to discover how people lived hundred years ago. Therefore, I could barely sleep last night because of my excitement before touring the cities of Arabian Peninsula for the first time. I have always wanted to visit the Arabian region, and I was finally there. My trip was full of technological discoveries and innovative ideas. With a map in my hand, I began my travel.

The republic of Yemen was the first country in my travel diary. It was a sunny but dry day, so the best solution for me was to go to the market and buy a bottle of water to quench my thirst. Then, after several minutes, I realized that it was a journey back in time of hundreds of years ago. At that time, there were no shopping centers and I became mad. As I was walking to the market, on every corner of the road, I could see only Jewish women selling or making fabulous, colored baskets. A basket is a unique idea to collect and transport food from different places (al-Semmari, 2010). When I was searching for water, one place caught my attention and it was a small market where tourists could buy frankincense and myrrh. Frankincense is an aromatic resign from trees and it is used as a perfume. Myrrh is a reddish and spicy product used in medicine and it is native only to Yemen. These two expensive products were traded along the Silk Road that was known as a network of trade routes across powerful civilizations (Frankopan, 2015). Moreover, I noticed a fact that in this city, people mostly used small cart with horses as their means of transportation. People with lower status found a donkey as only possibility in order to get from one place to another. Furthermore, the local citizen told me that a significant progress trading in Yemen was due to the long-distance overland caravan trade that transported precious goods as silk, porcelain, and jewelers. Therefore, I was done with the first city in my itinerary.

Next day, I made friends with a local girl and she showed me how to get to Dhofar, the region currently known as Oman. Oman is a southwestern corner of the Arabian Peninsula. This country is very popular for its vegetables, fruits, asbestos, coconuts, and fish. The first question that I asked this girl was what this asbestos looked like and girl told me that it was a grey material that did not burn and that was used as a protection against fire or heat. Clothing and mats were made from it. This type of commodity seemed to be very useful those days because it protected peoples homes from fire. After having a walk along a green valley, I decided to go to Muscat - the central city of Oman and the dominating city in trading. When I drove out into Muscat, I realized that all buildings were white and crumbling. I was quite impressed by this spectacular landscape. This country is isolated from the rest of the Arabian Peninsula by a rocky mountain. While in this place, I noticed that the most famous commodity was a mosques carpet that covered the prayer hall floor and it was the second largest carpet in the world. Being under a strong impression of that beautiful place, I decided to move on and discover a new corner of the world (Lonely Planet, Walker, Butler, Ham, & Schulte-Peevers, 2013).

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After spending two days in Oman and Muscat, I planned to go to the town of Riyadh. Riyadh was the country, the leadership of which had made substantial infrastructure improvements for the visitors like me. As for the first impression, I would like to say that I had never felt as lost and afraid as I was while staying in this country. I was on a shoestring budget and it was difficult for me staying there for a long time. In this place, I felt homesick so I decided to make friends with the local citizens. The locals were not very talkative but I met one boy whose name was Samuhali. He had arrived to Riyadh two years ago and he was a foreigner too. The acquaintance with this boy gave me a great possibility to find out more interesting facts about this place. For instance, Samuhali told me that leaders of this country had provided every child with a pipe a simple musical instrument used for making sounds and for relaxation after hunting. In addition, the government built a small tent for their children. The tent with the desks was real educational breakthrough and the only place where children had the possibility to learn how to write and read (Lonely Planet et al., 2013a).

Since my shelter was located in the central spot of Riyadh, I was able to walk through different spectacular places and observe the city with great interest. I knew that Riyadh was a regional trade hub that invested in manufacturing by selling oil among the East and the countries of the West. The major export items were feathers, gold, animal skins, meat, and fruit. Moreover, the primary products in this country were camels with big and oddly form. I had several chances to see them on the market. The camel was an expensive commodity in Riyadh. While observing Riyadh, I also noticed a loom - a frame, on which thread was woven into cloth. Finally, people had created some useful technology that could make their clothes more comfortable (Lonely Planet et al. 2103b).

However, during each trip, some challenges awaited for a tourist. I was not an exception. In the Arabian region, it is prohibited to taste products on the market. If you have tasted it, then you should buy it. Moreover, no one should talk to woman in any country of the Arabian Peninsula. If you do not know how to get to some place, just try to find it. I tried to talk to the local women in black clothes but they run away.

Finally, when my trip has done, I was very pleased because I was alive. It was an intense pleasure for me to discover the main trading hubs of the Silk Road and make the acquaintances with the local citizens. I was impressed by the technologies and ideas that the ancient people could invent in those times. My trip was over and I said goodbye to the Arabian Peninsula.

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Riding on a caravan (Cann, n.d.).

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Gold, frankincense and myrrh (2013).

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