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Despite the heat of the summer sun, the women were dressed in long sleeve shirts, traditional flower pants and their heads were covered.Gardens were filled with goats and chickens running around bundles of chopped firewood.
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The father would then asses the suitor’s financial position and the ability to provide for his daughter and the children that would be born so soon after the wedding.
I was truly shocked and over the next five years would hear of many other regional traditions.
The first signs of a difference in courting rituals between my home country of the UK and Turkey were evident on my first holiday.
We had signed up for a rough and tumble Jeep safari around the mountains of Marmaris.
She never had to buy that little black dress and high heels to impress.
Every day, I am in Turkey, I learn more and more about my adopted country and it never fails to surprise but as Turkey moves further towards western values and trends, I wonder what will happen to the traditional Turkish dating rituals of the past.
Ranging from the girl judged on her potential to be a good wife from how good her coffee tasted.
There was also the tale of a girls dowry would depend on how much she weighed, hence the encouragement by the family to put on weight.
Thankfully, the question of my virginity was never discussed even though I was ordered to wear a red virgin ribbon around my wedding dress.
Ours was a fast paced love affair yet my husband’s sister was traditionally courted because her marriage was arranged.
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