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March 31, 2005

Damascus Mosque, Syrıa

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Damascus, Syria has been one of my favorite cities on my trip thus far. It retaıns its historical energy still. One can witness Roman elements layered with Christian, Islamıc, and Byzantine. The people are genuine, they are more westernized than the rest of the Middle East I have been to, and yet still hold onto their heritage.

Posted by follett at 11:16 AM | Comments (32)

March 30, 2005

Oval Plaza, Jerash

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The Roman town of Jerash is probably the best Roman town I have seen on my trip thus far. The Oval Plaza is a great public space that connects many different elements together.

Posted by follett at 11:25 AM | Comments (1)

March 29, 2005

Saddam Hussein Money, Amman, Jordan

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I bought some money from some Iraqis yesterday and some Saddam Hussein Bank notes of some kind. The Iraqis were really nice, funny, and spoke a little English. I tried asking them how they felt about what was going on and I think they pretended not to understand me. They told me they were going back home in 2 months and we wished each other the best. The Iraqi's I have met so far, I instantly bond with, we exchange e-mails addresses and everything. Soon as we say where we are from, it is like we both understand each other and nothing has to be said. Many Europeans are here vacationing and studying Arabic. I think the Europeans are making the right move. Rather than bombing the Middle East, they are trying to learn about the culture here. Everyone I have met so far in the Middle East is very kind. I feel safer here than in Red River, Minnesota. Oh wait that is not saying much. I feel safer here than most places back home.

Posted by follett at 11:30 AM | Comments (2288)

March 28, 2005

The Monastery, Petra, Jordan

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The Monastery is at the top of one of the high points in Petra. It takes about two hours to climb to the top. The view is amazing, it is impossible to believe that this was all carved by hand. This is the longest and hardest walking I had done on my trip. I collapsed every night with exhaustion. It is so beautiful, you do not want to stop roaming through the endless passages and tombs.

Posted by follett at 11:39 AM | Comments (48)

March 27, 2005

The Treasury, Petra, Jordan

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The Treasury sits in a deep canyon that seems as if the canyon was shaped to be a great public meeting space. The arrival is quite amazing with the narrow twisting canyon of beautiful reds, yellows, and blues. Every night at the hotel Indian Jones and The Last Crusade played and I heard the flute player that was in the movie as I drew the Monastery.

Posted by follett at 11:47 AM | Comments (0)

March 26, 2005

The Urn Tomb, Petra, Jordan

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The tomb interiors contain a great texture and coloring. Since the tombs are essentially cut straight into the cliffs, the builders are using one solid piece of stone. The graining of the sandstone transfers three dimensionally across the room. The light and sound is pure and powerful. Singers, guitar players, and chanters test their abilities in these spaces which makes for a great way to spend a day sketching. Yea, this is tough, four more months and hopefully longer...

Posted by follett at 11:55 AM | Comments (4)

March 25, 2005

Urn Tomb, Petra

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The monumental tomb ıs good to visit late in the day when the sun works its magıc across the solid stone room.

Posted by follett at 01:57 PM | Comments (2)

March 24, 2005

Jordan Landscape

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The severe landscape of Jordan is nice in the Sprıng, nights are still cold. Don't try and stay in a cave lıke my friend Charlie, he made it about two hours.

Posted by follett at 02:01 PM | Comments (7)

March 23, 2005

Dead Sea, Jordan

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A surreal place to swim. I won't show you the classic picture of me floating above the water, not that flattering, my picture taker was not an artist.

Posted by follett at 02:04 PM | Comments (8)

March 22, 2005

Corbett Tiger Reserve, India

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Tracking Tigers, this is as close as I got to the those striped guys.

Posted by follett at 02:42 PM | Comments (8)

March 21, 2005

Corbett Tiger Reserve, India

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Monkeys and deer are friends. They look out for the tigers together.

Posted by follett at 02:38 PM | Comments (8)

March 20, 2005

Indian God, Chandighar 03.20.05

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I am now a religious man, this is my god. I don't think I need to explain, do I?

Posted by follett at 03:19 PM | Comments (237)

March 14, 2005

Jaipur, India

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There is something very exciting about walking down the street and seeing a cow, an elephant, and a monkey pass you by without any hesitation. Like it was any other day in India, oh wait it is.

Posted by follett at 02:33 PM | Comments (8)

March 13, 2005

The Taj 03.13.05

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The Taj as it is affectionately called by the locals has some great inlaid stone details.

Posted by follett at 03:00 PM | Comments (22)

March 12, 2005

Agra, India

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India has over 1 billion people and over 350 gods. Every day seems to have some religios holiday, 3 weddings, and every city is some very important religious pilgrimage. Every day one has a reason to dress up in the beautiful colors of India.

Posted by follett at 02:25 PM | Comments (109)

March 11, 2005

Taj Mahal, India 03.11.05

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Relief and precious stone inlay detail, seamless. Details at the opposite scale of the pyramids of Egypt.

Posted by follett at 03:33 PM | Comments (2)

March 10, 2005

Old Delhi, India 03.10.05

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Old Delhi transfers you back in time and to another world.

Posted by follett at 03:26 PM | Comments (7)

March 07, 2005

A letter to President Bush from Egypt 03.07.05

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While you walk down the streets of Cairo you get welcomed by people on the street. You always get asked the same questions, where are you from and what is your name? When I say I am an American the next two questions are do you like Bush and do you like Iraqi's. There are a surprising amout of Egyptians that are pro Bush. The Sanai area was not pro Bush, but the rest of Egypt has positive comments for the President of the USA. Most Egyptians are tender and very kind people. This man today I spoke with for an hour a two. He wanted me to deliver a letter to President Bush and I said I would. He told me that I cannot put his name on the letter till I get back in the US as it would not be good to have his name attached to it here in Egypt. He said that Egyptains are thieves and Americans are good people for all the gifts they give to Egypt. He also said he wanted American lawyers and judges here in Egypt but NOT American bombs or missles. He did not agree with the Iraq war but he wants the Middle East to be a democratic world. This opinion is pretty unified here in the Middle East weather people are pro Bush or not, they are seperate issues as they see it. He is a very passionate man and very tender, as he spoke with me about religion and politics his eyes would tear up. I have had many great experiences here in Egypt and I will miss it here, I hope to come back soon.

Posted by follett at 01:26 PM | Comments (13)

March 06, 2005

Tentmakers Market, Cairo 03.06.05

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Islamic Cairo is a great old part of town that still is working as a market and is the main street to many old neighborhoods. There is one area that is highly touristed but the rest of it still a living city with market vendors. Many of the monuments are in rough shape but are slowly being restored. Many of the market buildings have a great public presence such as the Tentmakers Market building.

Posted by follett at 01:44 PM | Comments (88)

March 05, 2005

Sabil-Kuttab of Abdel Katkhuda 03.05.05

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A public drinking fountain and a Quranic school. Another great public monument that needs some serious love.

Posted by follett at 01:53 PM | Comments (4)

March 04, 2005

Mosques of Taghribardi, Sheikhu, and Salton Hassan, Cairo 03.04.05

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There are many small Mosques in Islamic Cairo that side saddle the streets and shape the public space of the street. The Mosques are flexible in their form to adapt to each street situation. The common elements of the tower, dome, entry usually sit next to the street and are great public sculptures that shape the skyline of Cairo. Wood porch-like structures attach to many buildings in Islamic Cairo with screens and large canopies creating great civic gestures. The stone massing of the Mosques serve as anchors along the the many other structures along the the street.

Posted by follett at 02:01 PM | Comments (1)

March 02, 2005

Tent Souk, Cairo 03.02.05

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The thick air of Cairo, mystic.

Posted by follett at 03:38 PM | Comments (6)

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"The room is the beginning of architecture. It is the place of the mind. You in the room with its dimensions, its structure, its light respond to its character, its spiritual aura, recognizing, that whatever the human proposes and makes, becomes a life."

LOUIS KAHN, Gold Medal for Lifetime Achievement Award Acceptance Speech
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