Even today, Hans van Ess clearly remembers how the scents, so foreign to him at the time, assailed his nose. He stood next to his father, the islamologist Josef van Ess, in the bazaar in Beirut and saw the spices piled up in heaps on tables along the street. Cardamom, cloves, curry, saffron and allspice – a sea of colors. All around the boy, scurrying people and the buzz of haggling merchants. An experience that would leave a lasting impression on him.
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