Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Women's Market Visit

    I've already blogged about our great local market here when we can buy fruits and vegetables that taste so much better than the produce in the states. But there is another kind of market you can visit called the Women's Market.  At a produce market the vendors will all be men. But at the Women's Market the products are all created and sold by women. It's a much different experience.
   My daughter Delaney has been dying to go to the Women's Market but since the market is held on Wednesday, her school classes prevented her from going. And then miraculously, there was a Wednesday with no school. So off we went.
   I drove with my trusty friend Karen navigating. I even brought my GPS so I could mark the spot and possibly get back there on my own.  I have to admit though, I'm still rather terrified of driving here in Turkey and it hasn't improved much in the 7 months we've been here.  For many years I have considered myself a brave person. The kind of brave that will drive from Florida to Arizona by herself with four children because hubby was in Korea and I wanted to see my family for the summer. The kind of brave that can evacuate due to a hurricane (sans deployed hubby) and not stress too much about it.
     I thought that strength and independence would serve me well living in a foreign country. But driving in Turkey takes a different kind of brave. Roller Coaster brave. Dirt bike riding brave. Snow skiing downhill at high speed brave. Basically, adrenaline junkie brave. And if you know me at all, you know I am not that kind of brave. I am a mouse. A timid one.
   Nevertheless, we made it and I even found a place to park. The Women's Market is divided into two sections: handmade items and homemade food.
Aren't we cute?  I ended up buying the one Delaney is wearing. And I LOVE it.

 This time of year you can find a lot of knit and crochet hats and scarves. All colors, patterns and yarn types.  The skills of these ladies are unbelievable. I ended up buying a hat and two scarves. Delaney bought a hat.  One of the scarves I bought is the softest yarn I have ever felt. Its orange and fuzzy and I walked around petting it the whole time. Seriously.  I'm not a cat person but it was like wearing a kitten around your neck (without the bitty claws).  We paid from 5-10 Lira for each item. That's about 4-7 dollars. Incredibly cheap. When I was in Germany last week and saw similar scarves for 20 Euro, I appreciated all the more how inexpensive things are here in Turkey.

Here is the hat Delaney bought. The cute flowers on the side are a bit hard to see but they are darling.
 You can also buy jewelry there. These funny mustaches necklaces cracked us up. You could also buy a mustache ring or earrings.  Delaney and I both purchased necklaces and Delaney got some matching earrings as well. Not of mustaches. These had crocheted chains with large metal flower pendants. Very cool.
   Behind Delaney is our friend Melody. She just moved here recently so it was fun to take her along. She has a great attitude and is loving the adventure of Turkey. 

There are also lots of scarves of the type used to cover hair for sale here, often with intricate crochet around the edges. Tablecloths, doilies and darling crocheted baby clothes are also offered. And because the women vendors are not as pushy persistent as male vendors tend to be, shopping there is a much more relaxed and enjoyable experience.

Once we finished the handmade section, it was time to check out the food. Nearly all the food is made right there so you can watch it being created. The most fascinating was these little nut filled fried pastries.

This older Turkish woman starts with a small blob of dough then rolls it out with a thin dowel to an impossibly thinness.

 Then she puts small piles of chopped nuts in a line down the middle of the dough, fold the dough over a couple of times and then pinches in between each mound.

 She then cuts them apart into these little boat shapes and they are fried and then dipped into the sugar syrup that nearly every Turkish dessert includes.

They are good but you can only eat one of them before you are overwhelmed by the sweetness. We bought some of these and some tiny donut holes that looked delicious but were way too syrupy. My favorite is the scone fry bread that is filled with a potato and cheese mixture. Yum!

So now you know what a trip to the Women's Market in Adana is like. Come visit me and I'll work up the courage to drive you there myself!

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