Home User CP Browse Members Calendar Register Today!  
Get New posts Faq / Help? Community Menu
   

Go Back   Hookah Pro - Hookah Forum > Hookah Stuff > Hookah Discussion

Hookah Discussion General discussion related to hookah ...

Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Hookah Discussion

Reply Share
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old April 17th, 2010, 12:43 PM
Hookah-burdar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 173
Default Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Hi everyone,

today, after quite a number of years without trying it again, I decided to smoke some Tunisian traditional plain moassel from the favorite brand in that country (at least among old men) SHEIKH EL BALAD.
I still had some, brought from Tunis long time ago. It was rather dry, so I tried to recover it a few days ago by adding some molasses: just a small coffee spun for what reminded of a 50 gram box. I left it on a tupperware for some days and today, tried in my first "shisha": a beautiful tunisian rig, without purge and with fixed ashtray, the way Tunisian waterpipes used to be, with an even more beautiful bohemian crystal base, chosen in the souk of the medina (old town) of Tunis, for my birthday back in 1998. The "djebed" or hose is Tunisian as well, of the best quality available at the end of the nineties. I put the coals directly over the tobacco, packed, as some advice to pack a bowl of Zaghloul, the "good old way": that is loose at the bottom of the bowl and more pressed on the surface you will burn. Now, mark that Tunisian bowls are made of metal, and are almost flat. I smoked for about 45 minutes, avoiding to take too many deep draughts, in order to avoid getting a bad buzz. I was somewhat disappointed by the relative lack of flavour of the tobacco, but then, as I hoped, having got used to smoking briar pipes and sometimes cigars, since I first tried plain moassel more than ten years ago, I was surprised to stand it very well. No buzz, and a rather relaxing feeling.
As I was smoking, I was listening to a Tunisian traditional MALOUF singer who arguably one of the best voices in the Arab world: LOTFI BOUCHNÂK. (the CD is INEDIT LOTFI BOUCHNAK, Malouf Tunisien (Maison des Cultures du Monde, 1993). Same as the moassel, I had'nt listenned to this CD, which is one of the first classical Arab music I bought, and is now out of stock, for quite some time. It is gorgeous, at least for those of us who like classical Arab stuff, and very representative of the best recordings of the Tunisian version (MALOUF) of what is called Andalusian Music, that is classical music of he Maghreb, called NOUBA in morocco, and yet another name in Algeria. Altogether it was a very nice smoking session! Even if I should try again this SHEIKH EL BALAD, but fresh, not "recovered"...
I will try to upload some pictures of my tunisian shishas.

Last edited by Hookah-burdar; April 17th, 2010 at 02:09 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old April 17th, 2010, 12:47 PM
abu ronin's Avatar
abu ronin
Status: Offline
Hookah Master
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: mpls
Posts: 4,498
Send a message via Yahoo to abu ronin
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Glad to hear you had a great smoke! I'de love to see some pics of your Tunisian shishas.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old April 17th, 2010, 01:58 PM
Hookah-burdar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 173
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Quote:
Originally Posted by abu ronin View Post
Glad to hear you had a great smoke! I'de love to see some pics of your Tunisian shishas.
I just uploaded some pictures of my first Tunisian Shisha (waterpipe) taken this afternoon. It was a gift for my birthday back in 1998, while staying in Tunis with my Tunisian girlfriend. I then changed the hose ("Djebbed") two years later on another trip to Tunisia, choosing a better one (best quality available then) to suit the very nice Bohemian crystal base.

Pictures are in an Album called Tunisian pipes ("shisha"). By the way, if I insist on saying, or reminding You that "shisha" means bottle, and hence water-pipe in both Egypt and Tunisia (it being called Arghile or Narghile in Syria, Palestine, Israel, or lebanon, and Nargile in Turkey, Hookah in India or Kalyan or Galyoun in Iran (among other names for particular waterpipes (either small or with some particularity), it is just to inform you. I do not intend to convince you of stop calling tobacco molasses ("Moassel") Sisha, but I just won't call the tobacco mixture "shisha"...
By the way, in dialectal Tunisian Arabic, they wrongly call their "moassel" "TOMBAK", or sometimes, the plain one (such a SHEIKH EL BALAD) "Jurak". SHEIKH EL BALAD is in fact plain molasses, not "tombak" nor "Jurak".
Tomorrow I will smoke another popular brand in Tunisia, called AMBRE, which says "AMBRE TOMBAK" on the box. Again, it is "moassel", with a slight touch of amber.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old April 17th, 2010, 02:02 PM
TheHookahholics
Status: Offline
Hookah Newbie
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 9
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Sounds like this will be a very memorable smoke for you.

The story behind it all is truly something special.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old April 17th, 2010, 02:04 PM
Hookah-burdar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 173
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Quote:
Originally Posted by abu ronin View Post
Glad to hear you had a great smoke! I'de love to see some pics of your Tunisian shishas.
I will just add a couple I took of the pictures this afternoon on this thread. As said, to peruse the rest of them, if interested, go the the Album, "Tunisian pipes (shisha)".
Attached Thumbnails
Tunisan shisha on Egyptian copper plate.JPG   Bohemian base and Tunisian Djebbed (hose).jpg   SHEIKH EL BALAD 50 gr. box.JPG  
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old April 17th, 2010, 02:06 PM
abu ronin's Avatar
abu ronin
Status: Offline
Hookah Master
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: mpls
Posts: 4,498
Send a message via Yahoo to abu ronin
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hookah-burdar View Post
I just uploaded some pictures of my first Tunisian Shisha (waterpipe) taken this afternoon. It was a gift for my birthday back in 1998, while staying in Tunis with my Tunisian girlfriend. I then changed the hose ("Djebbed") two years later on another trip to Tunisia, choosing a better one (best quality available then) to suit the very nice Bohemian crystal base.

Pictures are in an Album called Tunisian pipes ("shisha"). By the way, if I insist on saying, or reminding You that "shisha" means bottle, and hence water-pipe in both Egypt and Tunisia (it being called Arghile or Narghile in Syria, Palestine, Israel, or lebanon, and Nargile in Turkey, Hookah in India or Kalyan or Galyoun in Iran (among other names for particular waterpipes (either small or with some particularity), it is just to inform you. I do not intend to convince you of stop calling tobacco molasses ("Moassel") Sisha, but I just won't call the tobacco mixture "shisha"...
By the way, in dialectal Tunisian Arabic, they wrongly call their "moassel" "TOMBAK", or sometimes, the plain one (such a SHEIKH EL BALAD) "Jurak". SHEIKH EL BALAD is in fact plain molasses, not "tombak" nor "Jurak".
Tomorrow I will smoke another popular brand in Tunisia, called AMBRE, which says "AMBRE TOMBAK" on the box. Again, it is "moassel", with a slight touch of amber.
thanks man. I'm well aware of the proper terminology w/regards to region, btw. That's nice looking shisha. The lack of purge reminds me of some turkish narghile. The hose looks very Syrian in style as well. Beautiful!!
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old April 17th, 2010, 02:21 PM
Hookah-burdar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 173
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Quote:
Originally Posted by abu ronin View Post
thanks man. I'm well aware of the proper terminology w/regards to region, btw. That's nice looking shisha. The lack of purge reminds me of some turkish narghile. The hose looks very Syrian in style as well. Beautiful!!
Well traditional Tunisian pipes as Turkish nargiles (you might have seen two nice ELMAS NARGILES in the background of some of the pictures) did not use to have purges.
Then the hose is typically Tunisian, a mix between Turkish and Egyptian, I would say: the Turkish influence in Tunisia was great, since the Ottomans ruled the country for quite some time. The Tunisian hoses usually have long wooden handles, much heavier than Turkish ones, but almost as long. They used to be exported to other middle Eastern countries, before the current explosion of "Shishamania" around the world took place, starting about ten years ago. Now the Western, mostly the US market rules, I would say, and western customers as well as rich ones in Arab countries are either preferring Nammors, Razans or Narbish ones or rediscovered leather hoses... (I believe).
I will keep adding pictures of my other pipes. Check my other nice Tunisian with Bohemian bottle: another birthday gift that I love.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old April 17th, 2010, 03:01 PM
Hookah-burdar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 173
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

I just uploaded a few more pictures of my Tunisian shishas (album "Tunisian pipes (shisha)")
Attached Thumbnails
Second Tunisian Shisha with Bohemian base.jpg  
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old April 17th, 2010, 03:24 PM
Hookah-burdar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 173
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Just a sample of Tunisian singer LOTFI BOUCHNÂK's (of Bosnian descent) performance:
http://www.youtube.com/watch#!v=mrTu...eature=related
I love that kind of Music!
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old April 17th, 2010, 04:28 PM
Hajo Flettner
Status: Offline
Hookah Legend
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 4,746
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

I regret to say that outside of a charming girl that lives in the U.K. and yourself it seems that no other Tunisians are here which is a pity since Tunisian craftsmanship is excellent and they have as much as any other nation I can think of to add to our understanding of all things narghile related. Personally I am huge fan of Sheikh El Balad although Ambre is decent I prefer El Kif, Arous El Nile and El Gondoul to it.
As to terms, well I confess to be confused by the way Tunisians use the terms tombac and jurak. I haven’t spent much time in Tunis but I have noted that in the more rural parts of the country people actually use the correct terms. I also have had far less luck finding old fashioned Tunisian jurak, tombac and black moassel then I would like. The few I have had are very strong and remind me more of Persian products which is odd since I know that they have no connections. I suppose it is because they often use something that reminds of Bergamot oil
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old April 17th, 2010, 05:49 PM
BIGPOPPA's Avatar
BIGPOPPA
Status: Offline
I call it hypocritical BS
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: VAIL, AZ
Posts: 3,615
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hookah-burdar View Post
Just a sample of Tunisian singer LOTFI BOUCHNÂK's (of Bosnian descent) performance:
http://www.youtube.com/watch#!v=mrTuNKPkwII&feature=related
I love that kind of Music!

I really enjoyed this! Thank you for the link!
__________________
Hi, my name's John. You are in violation of the balance. Leave immediately or I will deport you.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old April 17th, 2010, 06:34 PM
Hookah-burdar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 173
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hajo Flettner View Post
I regret to say that outside of a charming girl that lives in the U.K. and yourself it seems that no other Tunisians are here which is a pity since Tunisian craftsmanship is excellent and they have as much as any other nation I can think of to add to our understanding of all things narghile related. Personally I am huge fan of Sheikh El Balad although Ambre is decent I prefer El Kif, Arous El Nile and El Gondoul to it.
As to terms, well I confess to be confused by the way Tunisians use the terms tombac and jurak. I haven’t spent much time in Tunis but I have noted that in the more rural parts of the country people actually use the correct terms. I also have had far less luck finding old fashioned Tunisian jurak, tombac and black moassel then I would like. The few I have had are very strong and remind me more of Persian products which is odd since I know that they have no connections. I suppose it is because they often use something that reminds of Bergamot oil
Hajo, I dated a Tunisian girl for about five years, and I am very much interested in the country, but I am a Spaniard, who was born abroad, spent a third of his life, so far, abroad, but mostly in Northern Europe. I attended French schools, and then started learning English, as a third language and German as a fourth. For the last twenty years of so I have been interested in the Arab culture, particularly its classical music and art. I just started learning Arabic a few months ago. Now, about Tunisia, I have visited the country quite a number of times. For us, Spaniards, Tunisia is close and cheap, and I have some good friends over there. I actually always went to friends homes when I visited Tunisia. In my opinion this is a very good way to get acquainted with a country, and the culture of its inhabitants.
Hope You loved Lotfi Bouchnâk! (There are'nt too many recordings of him, but there are quite a number of videos on Youtube) I was fortunate enough to listen to him life at the "Théatre Municipal" (the old colonial one, built by the French) some years ago.

Last edited by Hookah-burdar; April 17th, 2010 at 06:47 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old April 17th, 2010, 06:46 PM
Hajo Flettner
Status: Offline
Hookah Legend
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 4,746
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Funny, I assumed that you to be a Tunisisian in Spain rather then a Spaniard in Tunisia. Anyway, I make it to Tunisia about 4-6 times a year but it's always on business so my free times in'st that great. As to the country, well I like most of it but not Tunis. While I like classical instrumentalist from Arabic countries and I play some as well my language skills suck to much to ever learn Arabic. Although I appricate Arabic culture as best I can I am an Occidental and proud of it. Tunsisia has much to commend it in terms of food, hospitality, craftsmanship and tobacco but musically I much prefer the folk and court instrumental material that gets so little attention any more. It really is a shame that all the great narghile related stuff from Tunisia never gets exported.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old April 17th, 2010, 06:57 PM
Hookah-burdar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 173
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Quote:
Originally Posted by BIGPOPPA View Post
I really enjoyed this! Thank you for the link!
Shoukran ya Bigpoppa! Thank You Bigpoppa!

Here is another sample, more typical of the Tunisian Malouf type of music, with Lotfi and musicians in traditional garb (Djebba and Kiswa) but with old fashioned tall Turkish type fez headdress instead of the more typical Tunisian Sheshia Tunsia.

http://www.youtube.com/watch#!v=xRYe...eature=related

Last edited by Hookah-burdar; April 18th, 2010 at 02:44 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old April 17th, 2010, 07:40 PM
Hookah-burdar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 173
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hajo Flettner View Post
[...] Personally I am huge fan of Sheikh El Balad although Ambre is decent I prefer El Kif, Arous El Nile and El Gondoul to it.
As to terms, well I confess to be confused by the way Tunisians use the terms tombac and jurak. I haven’t spent much time in Tunis but I have noted that in the more rural parts of the country people actually use the correct terms. I also have had far less luck finding old fashioned Tunisian jurak, tombac and black moassel then I would like. The few I have had are very strong and remind me more of Persian products which is odd since I know that they have no connections. I suppose it is because they often use something that reminds of Bergamot oil
Well Hajo, according to the great expert on Narghiles KAMAL CHAOUACHI, who works in Paris but happens to be Tunisian, as You know, although shisha smoking developed tremendously in the seventies in Tunisia, to the point of having the Administration adopt legislation to try to limit its expansion or abuse by Tunisian males (very few women smoked shisha in Tunisia), this form of consuming tobacco is relatively modern in that country. Now, as in Lebanon, Tunisians really smoke like mad with waterpipes. An uncle of my girlfriend, a lawyer by profession, would smoke almost continuously, at work, on his car, on the beach...
Surprisingly, even if Tunisia was ruled by the Ottomans for quite a long time, Western travellers do not record waterpipes until quite recently. Chibouks where much more common. "rguila" or "gargaras" small waterpipes (similar to some Egyptians and to Indian "Goorgoory" or narghiles with a long straigh tube instead of a hose where common in the nineteenth century, but the country only became a massive consumer of moassel in the last decades of the XXth Century. This would explain why Tunisian women do not often smoke shisha. Shisha was mostly smoked in cafés, and women did not go to cafés... Very few would smoke at home, as opposed to Egyptian, Lebanese or Persian women.
Tombak or Tombeki, does not appear to have been widely smoked or even smoked at all in Tunisia. It is smoked in Libya, but, according to CHAOUACHI it did not travel further west, in Africa, or it did not remain long in use there. Waterpipe smoking reached Tunisia and Algeria, under he Turks, but Tombak does not seem to have remained in use by Tunisians, nor by Algerians. In any case, waterpipe use by the population in general did not reach Morocco just foreigners (wether European, Turkish or Arabs) would bring a few narghiles for their own use, in the late nineteenth Century.
Waterpipe in Tunisia is rather smoked in the towns than in the countryside. Now, I also observed that the more You travel South, the more the terms used are Arabic instead of Tunisian Dialectal, or french or even italian. In Tunis most people would salute by saying "aslema" and "Bislema" as they leave, instead of "Assallamou aleikum". The same happened with many other words and expressions, and might welll have happened with the misuse of the terms "tombak" and "Jurak".

When visiting Tunisia I almost always smoked either SHEIKH EL BALAD or NAKHLA Dubble Apple. In my last trips I tried some other middle eastern brands and flavours (Rose, or grape) which where starting to become popular.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old April 17th, 2010, 08:57 PM
Hajo Flettner
Status: Offline
Hookah Legend
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 4,746
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

I am familiar with the excellent work of Kamal but I will differ on the matter of the use of water pipes in the South of Tunisia for the simple reason that I have had a great many experiences with smoking in the region. In particular I like the cafes I went to in the Kebili and Tataouine Governorates. In the case of the former I enjoyed locally made blended tombac which I found similar to what I had in Turkmenistan while the former had some fantastic black and old fashioned spice moassels. I think I have a little bit left from those trips but I am not sure. Interestingly, I also noticed and got to smoke from several narghiles ( that is the term, or some variant, I use since that is the term I most often in encounter when I travel) that use a metal, usually brass, or bone tube rather then a hose. I did notice that modern style jurak simply wasn’t to be found in such places which suited me. Also refreshing was the very laid back, social nature of the cafes I wondered into and I noticed that segregated the smokers according to what they smoked and that such establishments lacked stereos or TVs. I was always treated well in spite of looks and the use of a translator. I did also note that females were almost always absent from the cafes and that the ritual aspect of smoking is a good deal more common then what one typically finds the large urban cafes.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old April 18th, 2010, 05:01 AM
Hookah-burdar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 173
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hajo Flettner View Post
I am familiar with the excellent work of Kamal but I will differ on the matter of the use of water pipes in the South of Tunisia for the simple reason that I have had a great many experiences with smoking in the region. In particular I like the cafes I went to in the Kebili and Tataouine Governorates. In the case of the former I enjoyed locally made blended tombac which I found similar to what I had in Turkmenistan while the former had some fantastic black and old fashioned spice moassels. I think I have a little bit left from those trips but I am not sure. Interestingly, I also noticed and got to smoke from several narghiles ( that is the term, or some variant, I use since that is the term I most often in encounter when I travel) that use a metal, usually brass, or bone tube rather then a hose. I did notice that modern style jurak simply wasn’t to be found in such places which suited me. Also refreshing was the very laid back, social nature of the cafes I wondered into and I noticed that segregated the smokers according to what they smoked and that such establishments lacked stereos or TVs. I was always treated well in spite of looks and the use of a translator. I did also note that females were almost always absent from the cafes and that the ritual aspect of smoking is a good deal more common then what one typically finds the large urban cafes.
Very interesting Hajo. Do You think those cafés and traditional molasses are still to be found, even if only in the South? I haven't been to Tunisia since 2005, and would like to return soon. Las t time I went to the wedding of a Tunisian friend and then travelled across the North to Tabarka and the mountains behind.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old April 18th, 2010, 01:35 PM
Hajo Flettner
Status: Offline
Hookah Legend
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 4,746
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

I feel certain that such cafes are to be found since I was at one just a few months back although I would presume that they exist all over Tunisia and North Africa in general. I doubt if it's a North/South issue so much as an urban/rural issue since that is my impression from basically every Middle Eastern nation I’ve visited. Often times women aren't allowed in the old style cafes and when they are they need to be chaperoned and are segregated in a separate area within the café. It is also my experience that such cafes have narghiles reserved for regular clients or the client can bring in his own and have it stored, cleaned and prepared for him by the staff. Such establishments rarely have factory made products and the owners/staff/clients it seems have no interest in such products. Instead, they typically have moassels/tombacs/moassel that are within about 100KM and are utterly lacking in glycerin, fruit or and semblance of mod flavours.
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old April 18th, 2010, 02:27 PM
Hookah-burdar
Status: Offline
Hookah Nut
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 173
Default Re: Tunisian afternoon, at home in Madrid (Spain)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hookah-burdar View Post
Shoukran ya Bigpoppa! Thank You Bigpoppa!

Here is another sample, more typical of the Tunisian Malouf type of music, with Lotfi and musicians in traditional garb (Djebba and Kiswa) but with old fashioned tall Turkish type fez headdress instead of the more typical Tunisian Sheshia Tunsia.


http://www.youtube.com/watch#!v=xRYe...eature=related
I also collect traditional garb from different Arab countries, particularly headdresses, since I feel craftsmen might disappear and their traditional stuff with them. My best item so far is a nice Tunisian silken Djebba, hand woven and hand embroidered. Tunis souk is indeed quite interesting when you leave the main road, too touristic and go to visit the specialized craftsmen quarters, the weavers, or tailors, the makers of Seshias, the jewelers or the shisha stuff....
Reply With Quote
Reply Share
Share with your friends on facebook

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Hi from Spain! carloshiphop2 Introductions - Forum Members 3 April 14th, 2010 08:42 PM
Look at what I stumbled upon: Tunisian Moassel in the heart of Cairo The Egyptian Hookah Discussion 18 August 2nd, 2009 07:24 PM
HH spearmint and HF afternoon delight mix medicare Hookah Discussion 0 March 26th, 2009 12:11 AM
Good Afternoon Hookahpro phatpride1 Hookah Pro Member Videos 4 February 13th, 2009 12:34 AM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:20 AM.

Skin Design By vBSkinworks



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©2007 - 2012, Hookah Pro Inc.