Archive for the ‘Personal Reflections’ Category:


Carpet and Rug Cleaning after the Calgary Flood

o many old and antique rugs sourced by Leah and I in Istanbul have come to call Calgary, Alberta home.  Now after the record flood in Calgary we have had a call inquiring how to deal with the silt drenched carpets that were on the floors of homes recently flooded. Before I give some input on the question of what to do with soggy rugs let me say that Jack and I are so amazingly thankful that our own little late 1940’s home just several hundred metres from one of Calgary’s main rivers weathered the onslaught of the flood.  Our basement is

Day Trip from Mardin to Dara – SE Turkey

he week before it was time to come home from Turkey my daughter Leah and I took a short trip to Mardin in the Southeast of Turkey.  Our time was a combination of putting our feet up and relaxing and also exploring some nearby sites and cities that I had never visited previously. One such morning we set aside some time for a trip to Dara.  Dara is a village built on the site of ruins dating back to the 6th c BC.  The name harkens back to King Darius the Persian king

Head to Toe – An Incidental Collection

Garments from Turkey and Central Asia

y preparations for an upcoming presentation to the New Calgary Rug and Textile Club are now  underway.  On Saturday, January 14th from 2 to 4 pm at the new Taylor Digital Library at the University of Calgary I will show and speak about a group of garments which I have collected over the years in Istanbul.  These pieces were acquired one by one as I pursued my primary business of purchasing antique carpets and textiles for various clients.  If you are local and want to come along there is a nominal fee of $5 to attend or better still purchase a membership to the club and enjoy future presentations and lectures($25 for single membership or $50 for a couple).  I am in the midst of the process of sorting out what to include, what to exclude, which format to use, and a seemingly myriad of small decisions as I do the ‘mental sort’ of all the details that exist in my head and need to be corralled to create a degree of order. Rather than

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A TURKISH GIFT

  hinking back of gifts given and received and some of the best memories I have are of the unexpected gifts. A meaningful gift arrived in the hands of a Turkish child. Jack and I were on a road trip driving north from the Mediterranean through the Taurus Mountains. We were traveling on a religious holiday (Kurban Bayram) and were uncertain as to whether or not we would find restaurants open midday along the way.  This uncertainty about our lunch destination was reason enough to plan a picnic and the weather was mild and lovely, so inviting for a meal outdoors.  What better way to break up the hours of driving to our final destination in Cappadocia than to plan a picnic en route?   On our way out of Antalya we stopped at the local market.    Fresh cheeses, olives shiny and varied, peppers, tomatoes and cucumbers along with seasonal fruit were all piled from the stalls into our basket.  As an after thought we picked a perfect watermelon which we thought we would enjoy

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THROUGH THE LENS – TWO WOMEN LINKED BY PHOTOGRAPHY, FILM AND OUR FRIENDSHIP

  IN MEMORY OF: JOSEPHINE POWELL –  ETHNOGRAPHER, PHOTOGRAPHER AND KILIM SCHOLAR   1919-2007 and EVA MONLEY –  FILM PRODUCER    1924 – 2011 had an email last week that an old friend Eva Monley had died  in Nanyuki, Kenya of complications from a chest infection.  Eva was 88 years old. Five years ago another friend Josephine Powell died also at 87 years old from emphysema or COPD.  The death of Eva has made me reflect on the loss of both these women from my life. They never knew one another; lived and worked in different parts of the world; Josephine for a large portion of her life in Turkey and Central Asia and Eva often in Africa.   Their shared characters imprinted on me when I first met them in my mid forties. Together they shaped my perception of who I am as a woman and what life holds for me as woman who holds life. Eva was a film producer; Josephine an ethnographic photographer.  Both women had backbones of iron, determination, fierce independence and

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