Aleppo: no practicalities

I want to share with you the things I find cool when I travel. The things I can’t share with you in the guidebooks I write. Take this scene from the Aleppo souq. It’s two in the afternoon and this man’s asleep at his shop. It’s a cane shop. And they certainly look like nice canes. But that’s not the point. I can’t write about a cane shop in a guidebook. Who wants to buy canes? Canes don’t make great souvenirs. And regardless, including this man’s little cane shop would be a headache. It doesn’t have a name. There’s no phone number. I can’t even remember which alley it was on, so how do I answer the editor’s query about the practicalities (you know, that practical information in fine print). But what I want to tell you is to make sure you wander the Aleppo souq during siesta when the shopkeepers are taking their naps. You won’t be hassled. You won’t have to fight your way past boys on donkeys. And you’ll witness these moments. A slice of souq life. Of humanity. They’re touching. These are the moments that make travel cool for me. Tell me about your cool travel moments.