Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Carpet Souk: Three Years Later

They say the more things change, the more they stay the same and we found that to be true when we decided to buy a couple of additional carpets for our new place. We had so much fun the first time we visited the carpet souk that we decided to go back again. Figuring now that we knew how it worked, we could get an even better bargain.

The difference this time is that we wanted some Arabian style rugs, which we knew varied a lot in quality and price. We also knew we didn't know enough about Persian, Iranian or Turkish carpets to know if we were getting a good deal. So, like we always do, we set a budget in our minds and off we went to do the best we could.

Just like the first time, the minute we drove up, the carpet sellers started in. Beckoning us into the stores "just look madam" "very good carpet madam" "very good quality". From our trip 3 years ago (almost to the day) we knew that the shops all had about the same types of carpets so we picked one at random, settled in and started to explain what we were looking for.

They chased around and unrolled carpet after carpet, while we pointed out what we liked and what we didn't. Eventually, we settled on 2 larger rugs and then the bargaining began. It was as fun and entertaining as the first go around and to hear them talk, we bargained them out of their livelihood. In reality, we probably still paid too much, but we were all happy enough with the price.

As we started to wrap things up (and as a final negotiating tactic) we pulled out the photo below and explained that we had been here 3 years ago. Did they know if this man still had a shop here?

"Of course, madam! He is my father." And off they went to track him down so we could say hello . . . and we did get a few dirham more off the price for being such loyal customers. ;)

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