Aerobics, camel for lunch and Yin-Yang

Yazd Travel Blog

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The zurkhaneh is the most unusual sight ... a blend of chanting, exercise, bell, drums ... gym meets religion. Stranger still letting paying spectators in!

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Aerobics Iran Style

The weirdest sight I witnessed in Iran is the Zurkhaneh. It is like aerobics and weights done with Islamic chanting (complete with drums and bells). Weirder still is that they allow tourists to watch for a small fee ... now imagine if your gym sold tickets for people to watch you work out! Hhmm ... perhaps if it subsidised the membership fee it would be OK. Anyway, the men wear leather pants and the audience interject with occasional murmurs to to God, Mohammad or Ali (the Prophet)

Camel for lunch

I missed the slaughter of some camels for Imam Mahdi's birthday.

Camels outside the butcher shop.
It would NOT have been something I would have enjoyed but I still wouldn't mind seeing it as it was for food rather than for fun (eg. like bull-fighting).

  • Women, children and tourists were herded onto rooftops to avoid the spray!
  • The Irish lawyer said the animal died a slow painful death with the noise being worse than the spray of blood everywhere.
  • However, two Dutch vegetarians said the two jugular slits did the job quite quickly … the way it was meant to be with the Halal requirements. Halal slaughter also means that all blood should be drained off the meat before consumption.

I did try some camel meatballs (mixed with beef) in a delicious walnut and pomegranate sauce (fesenjan).  Yumm!

"Yin & Yang"

Here's a blog specially for Chinese readers ...

I was told that my kebab was a mix of beef and camel; pure camel would be too "hot". Further discussions revealed that Persians believe in "hot" and "cold" food just like the Chinese. Eg. Mangoes, meat and especially chocolate are hot but tea and beer are cold.

This one is so subtle but so precisely the same between both cultures ... sugar is hot but rock-sugar is cold. The more obvious ones are similar too ... chocolates are so hot they'll cause pimples and give you sore throat; drinking ice water is bad for you.


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The zurkhaneh is the most unusual …
The zurkhaneh is the most unusual…
Camels outside the butcher shop.
Camels outside the butcher shop.
photo by: macajam