After winding our way through the labyrinth of IKEA and the congested streets of Jeddah, we made it to Al Balad. Our visiting scientist wanted to buy some souvenirs and the new post docs had never seen the traditional side of the city. While wandering past the spice shops, stopping to buy a new abaya (for me!!), and bargaining for thobes, we noticed people gathering in the square. ...And then we started to hear drums. And some sort of primitive guitar. And then men started singing and dancing. The Saudi Arabian version of a street concert! Hundreds of people gathered to watch. Everyone had their phones out to take photos of a 2,000 year old tradition. It was a true cultural experience.
view video here (sorry for the poor quality, I've got to learn to edit videos!)