Indiana Jones ruined me.

There’s this scene, where Indy is searching through an Arab bazaar, desperate to find his “girlfriend”, Marion, who’s been kidnapped by the bad guys. Certain that she’s been hidden in a woven basket, Indy starts pulling off the lids of
every basket he can find, until finally he’s faced by an Arab heavy brandishing a sword. You know what Jones does from there.

My point is, ever since I watched Raiders of the Lost Ark, I’ve been fascinated by Middle Eastern bazaars. To be honest, I thought they were all in Morocco and other Arab countries, but in fact, there’s a great one in the Old City, Jerusalem. It’s called the Cardo, and it’s delightful.

As I walk down the stone path from Jaffa Gate to the Western wall, I’m greeted by exotic shops glowing with from within, shilling anything from fried meats to ceramic plates to incense to spices. Okay sure, a good many of the items on sale are souvenirs and tchotchkes, but somehow that doesn’t take away from the Aladdin’s Lamp feeling of the place. I’ve been to Israel seven times, and I always make a point of wandering down the Cardo in the Old City.
Thank you, Indiana Jones.