In Xi’an, the Muslim Quarter buzzes with colours, faces, stories and foods. Neither words nor photographs can do the experience justice, and the many phenomenal memories are difficult to distil – and yet I try.
A woman crouches to arrange the display of her informal stall. I can’t help but notice that she’s in the same position that many tourists have to quickly become accustomed to in the local restrooms.
My friend, Hairo, sniffs product to try determine its spiciness. I imagine that the young boy on the other side of the display is learning the tricks of the bartering trade, and every moment is a lesson for him.
Anything, from motorcycles to selfie-sticks, can be expected to be found in the Muslim Quarter.
There is so much to see just by standing in one spot. The buildings are dressed in gold lace, and yellow lights look like perfectly aligned stars. Every face tells a different story and all the food seems so exciting. How would I even begin to describe the countless smells and sounds?
A shirtless man folds a piece of muddy cupboard beside a dirty bucket and a box of sharpened sticks. Please, one day, can somebody write the story behind this scene?
Marco and I found an old palace-of-sorts, and the one section was under reconstruction. We wandered around the area and found a man sitting in the corner of, what seemed to be, a royal courtyard. He was reading a book and we watched him turn and skip several pages. Marco took this photo half hanging out of the window. (Photo credits: Marco Durazo)
As previously mentioned, anything can be expected to be found. Including meat in all its shapes and stripped forms.
Also, deep-fried squid on a stick. Very deep-fried and deliciously spiced.
It is quite something to see how noodles are made. Here, a man stretches the dough from the wall of the shop, across much of the pavement, and into the street. Around him, everyone is engaged in some activity and all their stories seem interesting.
There is so much art for sale, and the stalls are lined with too many lovely things – it impossible to try choose between the pieces.
A mother and her child in the “Leisure Post” – I think she was the wife of the man who ran the business.
Another mother also sat with her child at “Leisure Post”. She spoke to Marco (who is from America) about having once visited the United States herself. Standing n the background is the man who ran the business.
A woman slouches against the display of bright and brilliant colours, fabrics, styles and silk. It is a scene of utter exhaustion amongst so much excitement.
The scene is filled with glowing characters, fabrics and forms. I feel part of something magical.
There are more colours than can be imagined on the walls of the stalls in the Muslim Quarter. Every second is a different story, and every scene is has a different face.