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A Chance Meeting With a Saffron Farmer

It was hot and dusty, as we climbed the dimly lit stairs to the roof of the five-storey building.

Under a wooden lean-to, built on the flat roof of the mud coloured building, was a collection of goats and sheep, I couldn't help but think about how all their food would need to be carried up the stairs.

There's limited farming land in the city of Luxor though, and the animals were safe on top of the building, while crocuses grew in the dusty earth next to the apartments.

It was a fascinating insight into the lives of the Egyptian family, farming in difficult conditions and an absolute joy to be welcomed into their home.

Farming saffron, a spice so expensive because the dried stigma of the crocus flower is the only part used, is a risky business, there are lots of things that can go wrong but the farmer considered the payoff worth the risk.

At least that's what I understood from our attempt to converse.

I felt thankful to be able to immerse myself in another culture, interact with locals, and gain a deeper understanding of their different customs, traditions, and ways of life, even if only for a short time.

Back in 2007 I was a 25 year old backpacking around the world, it was eye opening encountering new experiences and my willingness to reflect and learn from them showed the transformative power of travel.

It was a small but memorable moment in my travel that is still a treasured memory.

Any time you feel like talking travel, count me in, I love chatting all things travel related, especially if it involves food.

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