Lisa’s Blog We left SFO Sunday night and now it’s Wednesday night but it will be only our second night spent sleeping horizontally! Despite waking to the mournful singing in the early morning darkness of the call to prayer from our neighborhood mosque, we awoke fairly refreshed and ready for the day’s adventures. Our hotel is pretty swank with all the ameneties, including buffet meals 3 times a day (of which the festival is affording us 2 per day), a lounge with a small bar where we’ve had coffee, Turkish coffee, wine, and beer), ‘business center’ with computers on which you can buy internet time, fitness room, and swimming pool room with sauna and hot tub. These latter two ameneties are accessable by men and women at different times of the day. However, Mohammed, our gracious concierge and former Dabkeh dancer, assured us that, while men cannot enter these rooms during “women time”, it would be absolutely okay for the women of our group to use them during “men time”. So, after our walking tour of the morning and tech rehearsal of the afternoon, we did. Edmer and Frank decided not to use the pools but exercise. There were several men in the pool when we got there, who gradually left it as we entered it–that was after we had been ushered into a dressing room where a gentleman was pulling on his pants… We found the hot tub scalding, but tried the sauna instead. One man ventured in with us and, after hearing our conversation, revealed that he’d visited the States. We had a pleasant conversation with him, but I’ve decided to stick to “women time” in the future!

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~ by ninahaftandcompany on April 21, 2010.

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