Monday, December 19, 2016

Hodgepodge 51/365 - Rugs

The other day I learned that Macy's was having a big rug sale. We decided we could use a couple of rugs—one small one for the entryway, and a bigger one, maybe 5' x 7', for the living room—and so went to check it out.

David and I usually agree pretty well on things. If we don't, I win. (No, not really. Would that that were true.) When it came to rugs, we learned that we don't agree. Or at least, the ones that were hanging up at Macy's, we didn't agree on. I favored a wool Pakistani one that was gold with splashes of flame and scarlet, and only $8,795! Marked down 70 percent, we could almost justify buying it. But David wasn't convinced, and so we decided to wait and look at a couple of other rug stores.

Which we did the next day. At a shop specializing in Oriental rugs, we found a small one for the entryway and snapped it up. It was a sampler of multicolored squares, very cheerful. And down the street at a store with the imaginative name of Carpets and Floors, we found an Oriental-style rug for only $599 that we both agreed we could live with. What a deal! So much better than $2,700.

But when we got them both home, the small rug proved to be too small—and so I moved it into the walk-in closet, where we didn't actually need a rug, but at least it didn't look silly. As for the big rug, it looked great in the living room! (Well, I wouldn't have minded if it were a tad larger. I guess I'm learning something about myself in terms of underestimating sizes. But the pattern was great!) Everybody—us, the dog, the cats— loved it! However, when cats love something, they show it with stretched claws, and every time a claw stretched, out came a tuft of wool. We thought, Hunh, and tried prying the wool out with our fingers. Out it came! This was one seriously deficient rug.

So, back to Carpets and Floors, where we left the rug for "inspection." Two days later, we got a call that they were going to refund our money. In the meantime, apparently, the rug had been hung up again—for the next unsuspecting sucker (or maybe just someone without pets). We also exchanged the too-small rug for something less cheerful but large enough that it doesn't make me cringe.

So: we still need a rug for the living room—maybe 6' x 8'. There's no rush.

The only other rug we own is one I brought back from India: it's an Afghan tribal rug, 3' x 5' or so. It lives in the TV area of our bedroom. I love it. It reminds me of that amazing trip (which I see I haven't yet written about here—I will have to remedy that), and it reminds me of a beautiful soul, Tom Grams, who was murdered by the Taliban a few years after I met him (in what I now learn is called the 2010 Badakhshan massacre—thank you, Wikipedia). Tom loved Afghanistan, and offered to bring me back rugs from his trips there doing humanitarian aid work (he was a dentist). I never took him up on his offer, sadly. Here is a video a friend made about Tom after his death. I didn't know Tom well, but I will always be grateful that I met him.

P.S. Since I posted this I noticed that I did, in fact, already write about Tom Grams, in connection with petrichor: the smell of dry land upon a first rainfall. He made an impression on me. I have no problem with a little repetition, in his honor.

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