Every time I go on vacation, I remind myself that whatever I buy there, I have to carry back. Of course, now that Ryan is around, that isn’t as much of a threat as it used to be because he’ll carry my suitcases if I whine enough. But still. I try not to get too nuts with things to bring home. Things I’ll never use or wonder why I got it once it’s unpacked. So this time I decided to try to buy one or two things in each port we stopped. And now I’m going to show you my booty (think pirate, not Beyoncé).
First stop – Venice, Italy. I actually also bought leather boots in Venice out of necessity (it was much colder than I thought it was going to be), but they’re not nearly as nice as what I got from Murano.
After a long, windy ride on a vaporetto, I got this gorgeous Murano glass ring! I was going to model it, but I’m in dire need of a manicure, so I’ll have to leave it to Ted to help you recognize the size. He was so “helpful” while I was taking pictures.
Next – Dubrovnik, Croatia. First off, did you know that Dubrovnik is…King’s Landing?! I didn’t. But I won’t bore you with my geeking out. Instead, I’ll show you my next purchase.
I guess Dubrovnik is known for its hand embroidery. And who doesn’t love hand embroidery more than someone who actually does it? So, when I saw these little coasters, I snatched them up. The lady selling them had about 10,000 products for sale and was hand embroidering more as she sat there. It was amazing. She was SO FAST. Here’s a close-up.LOVE THEM!
Next up – Kotor, Montenegro. We didn’t get to spend much time in Kotor, but we did the coolest thing while we were there – we visited an olive oil farm. I’ll post pictures of the actual tour in another post, but I bought some of the things they make on the farm – olive oil (obvs), olive oil soap and honey. It was a highlight of the trip.
Last stop – Istanbul, Turkey. Before we left, I was so jazzed about everything that was going to be at the Grand Bazaar. It sounded so fabulous! Honestly, it wasn’t really. The building itself was gorgeous, but it was like an exotic Venice Beach to me where almost everyone sold the exact same things and were really aggressive trying to get you into their shop. And everyone smoked which is something I completely forgot about because it’s illegal to smoke anywhere here in Santa Monica. You forget about how crappy second-hand smoke makes you feel. And I really hate bartering, but it was necessary here. Man, I’m a Crabby Patty. But I did end up getting a couple of really nice things here.
A leather ottoman. I’ll be honest, the leather ottoman wasn’t really on my list because we have nowhere to put it, but…I love those Moroccan ottomans you see online and decided to just take a gander through a pile of them in a shop for some dumb reason. Well, the salesman became hell-bent on us buying one that he dropped his price down to $20 from $75. After he had held a lighter up to it to prove it was leather and not fabric. It was unreal. I actually walked away, but then Ryan went back unbeknownst to me to surprise me. It’s a lot bigger than I thought, but Ted (because he’s a jerk) appears to love it more than any kitty bed he’s ever been given, so maybe we’ll just keep it in the living room after all. That’s after I figure out how to stuff the thing. I stuffed it to take pictures, but that’s filled with about 5 blankets and 3 sheets and it’s not nearly to capacity. Yeesh!
So that’s everything! I think I did pretty well. And I promise I’ll show you some pictures of the actual trip. I’m just waiting to get my film developed. Yes, you read that correctly. I decided to bring my Diana Mini with me and see if I could get some lomography shots. We’ll see. I took more than one (probably more than 10) picture with the lens cap on, so…there’s that. But I do have other “regular” pictures and Ryan and my friends offered up their pictures as well. Remember – patience is a virtue. One I don’t have, but it’s one nonetheless.