Tulips and History of Turkey Tour 2014
April 14th - 23rd, 2014
April 21. Monday.
In the morning I took some photos of our hotel and the area.
Also found an abandoned cave that used to be a home I think. The
old artwork was still on the walls and look at the shelves. Old
windows with figures of cats, old birdhouses and doors, such a
magical walk in the early morning made more so by the balloons.
Then we were off to visit the fascinating Goreme Valley. The
lunar like landscape of this region is eerie, yet beautiful.
Over thousands of years, the rain has eroded this landscape to
give rise to strange rock formations known as “Fairy Chimneys”.
Other world is the only way to describe this place. To see
camels too was weird. Then we enjoy a visit to local
municipality carpet cooperation. This was really interesting. We
found out that the most expensive and labour intensive carpets
were done by men in prison. These are the carpets that high
official and visiting dignitaries would receive. Needless to say
there were a few that found they way to North America. Exquisite
to say the least. The co-op was started in 1997 with over 13,000
involved now – mostly women. The co-op offer training then the
ladies go home after the training and the co-op supplies the
wool with the Chamber of Commerce providing the loom. They sign
a contract for 5 years but all their expenses are paid for and
they make good money at home.
After lunch we visited the Open Air Museum which was equally
amazing. So many churches…over 30 just in this one area. Built
with mud, hay and egg white and when the plaster is fresh, that
is when the frescoes were painted. Churches with nothing inside
except pits were for funerals. The pits were for the bones. Many
niches here and those were for pigeons. They used their
droppings for fertilizer. then and then a quick stop in the gift
shop…wow, such beautiful gifts then another stop to see a to die
for view over the valley and the adjoining market join then back
to our hotel to get ready for the Whirling Dervishes performance
then back to the hotel for dinner. The building this was held in
was a caravan hotel back in the mid 13th century. Every 40 kms –
which was the distance a camel could travel in a day – you would
find one of these hotels. The Whirling Dervishes are Sufi
Whirling Dervishes. Sufism, the mystical branch of Islam,
emphasizes universal love, peace, acceptance of various
spiritual paths and a mystical union with the divine. It is
associated with the dancing of whirling dervishes, who
originated in the 13th century as followers of the poet and
Muslim mystic, Rumi. Our guide told us that the biggest group of
these reside in California.
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