We happened to know about the museum that holds the mummified remains of the “ Saltmen,” or “men of the salt” (so called because they used to work in the salt mines) here in Zanjan. Here were found in Chehrabad, a few kilometers from the town and dating back to nearly 1800 years ago. Therefore, we decide to go and take a look. The view is quite impressive, one of the bodies, perfectly preserved during the time (thanks to the salt where they had been staying for hundreds of years following the collapse of a gallery), and shows its perfect attempt to shelter from the rubbles. A rather macabre scene is yet quite effective.
We then go for a visit to the ancient wash-house (dating back to the 20th century), a sort of common laundry where women gathered around an underground fountain to wash their clothes and spend some time for a chat, exchange some secrets and gossip away from their husband’s ears.
In this place, we meet an artisan working on the making of some characteristic leather sandals. Stefania undoubtedly tries them given her extraordinary passion for shoes, and suggest trying to launch the fashion in Italy, but she is not too sure that she will find any followers…. Maybe these sandals are a little bit too characteristic!
The area is also famous for the making of handmade knives. Therefore, we visit a workshop in the suburbs of town where the most well-known forger of blades of the region works! His knives seem to be the most famous of the whole country! In the blink of an eye, he finishes one and to prove its incredible sharpening; he tries it on himself! He puts the knife on his wrist and with a light grazing movement, he cuts the hairs on it. Filippo can hardly resist buying the knife! Not even the best Japanese knife would cut so precisely and the price, it is certainly very cheap, about € 35 for a piece that you would buy in Italy for double at the least.
Time for lunch now, we need to buy some food at the market and then, look for a quiet place away from the crowd and the streets where we can stop and park our caravan and give way to Giannino’s fantastic culinary improvisations.
We got pleasantly stuffed also today. Now we head for Maragheh reaching it among the lights of a beautiful sunset.