Amman and the Jordan Valley, Jordan
I am not sure what Ibn Battuta did about changes of clothing. Much of the clothing in my suitcase is linen, quite lovely and not remotely suitable for temperatures of -5 degrees Celsius which has been the the case in much of Syria in the last few days when the sun drops. (It is not much warmer in Amman.) It snowed in Palmyra, Jebel Ansariye and the hills around the capital. When I re-started the trip in Cairo - after divigating to Uzbekistan you will recall - it was 38 degrees Celsius and humid, and linen was perfect.
The beautiful linen wardrobe designed for me by Dabiki, www.dabiki.com a soon-to-be-launched label of lightweight linen and silk clothing for the tropics.
No longer. I was so cold one day that Khaled bought me a jacket in the souk after I had told him I was going to get a Bedouin jacket - they are made of cotton lined with wool - but wooly wool, straight from the sheep’s back.... So now I am warm but the wool of the jacket sticks to the fleece making me look like a shaggy dog when I take the jacket off. This is fine for the ‘local caff’, it is not fine for meetings with officials. It already seems as if I have been wearing the same two pairs of jeans, T-shirts, sweater and fleece for the last two months so the gathering wool bit is not making me feel better. When I next move the suitcase the clothes are going in the trash, I cannot bear to look at them any more and besides you can only wash things so many times.
And so back to the travels and yet another instance of 21st century politics making the same journey today if not impossible - difficult and potentially crippling.