A Single Stitch - My Family Travels

Everywhere I go, I seem to make one serious, meaningful connection with at least one person unexpectedly.  Today, our wonderful tour guide, Cengis, took us on an unexpected side trip to a Turkish rug store, where women from around the countryside come and hand-make tons of exquisite wool, cotton, and silk rugs and carpets.  They showed us the process of dying and weaving, and we got to sit next to a weaver at work.  In fact, all of us got to tie a single stitch in one of their masterpieces. 

The woman that I sat next to, Zehra, had the biggest smile of every person I’ve seen here, and though we couldn’t communicate in the same language, I felt so much love from her.  After they showed us the process, they took us into a room and showed us all the completed ones for sale.  Once I showed interest in the very small ones, I was taken into a different room where a man showed me all the others in my price range.  The room we were in didn’t have much light, so we took the ones I liked into the hallway so I could get a good look at them.  Just when I did, Zehra saw me and rushed over, smiling, and pointed to a beautiful rug I had picked out and motioned that she had made it.  Of course I had to choose that one.  

Though I haggled myself into a sweat before I even knew she created it, the fact that she did made it the most meaningful purchase I’ve ever made.  We hugged and smiled and took pictures and passed a few words through the English speaking man who sold it to me, and it brought tears to my eyes in the end.  I didn’t plan on buying a rug here.  I didn’t plan on making a friend that I’ll remember forever.  But I’m extremely grateful that I’ve done both of these things.  My stitch is in one of Zehra’s carpets, and now I have a wonderful possession of hers to remember Turkey by.  

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