Monday, November 24, 2008

The Carpet Salesman. Part 2.


M
y cellphone rang at shortly after 10am this morning. That was my wake up call for the day. I looked at the number and didn't recognize it. I thought maybe it was someone calling me to tell me that my luggage had arrived so I quickly dialed back. It was Zeki on the other end of the line with an offer to have breakfast with him. It was a no-brainer decision on my part. Either coffee with a charming Turkish gentleman or by myself in the hotel kitchen.....hmmmm.

We made plans to meet at his shop and walk over to a nearby coffee shop for breakfast. Over two cups of coffee and some pastry, we talked for two hours about love and relationships. Not for a moment could I have ever imagined having such a conversation with a Turkish man whom I barely know but conversation seems to come easy to Zeki and besides, who am I to complain? I am enjoying my time with him. So far, he's been the ultimate gentleman, speaks English fluently, is very charismatic and if I might say so myself, easy on the eyes :-)

I reminded Zeki that before the day was out I had wanted to return to the shop to see the Anatolian artwork but no carpets. I cannot resist buying carpets - it is my weakness so I try to resist as best I can. Zeki offered that he would sell me the rugs at the same price he paid for them - he was not going to make saying "No, thank you" easy for me!

We decided to go the store at that point - when I am ready to buy something, I don't like to waste time. Back at his shop he showed me his carpets. Damn him. One look and I was drawn in. It was bad. I wanted to buy everything I saw...every piece was either beautiful to the eyes, beautiful to touch, intoxicating to smell or somehow in their humble simplicity, just spoke to me. In a matter of minutes, I had picked out 3 rugs - all either Anatolian or Kurdish in design.....and after Zeki did the math, I would only ending up paying for all 3 rugs just a little over half as much as I had for the single rug that I had bought in Selçuk earlier this year. So much for not buying any rugs :-)

I have to meet back up with Zeki in a few hours to pay him and pick up the rugs. He has offered to take me to Ürgüp tomorrow to see the "off-the-beaten-tourist-path" sites. It is a very tempting offer but no more rugs I said. :-)