The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Going around the bend, not one mile after we left Pamukkale, we came upon the Spa Hotel Colossae Thermal. We couldn’t resist, even though this was place was clearly built to cater to the tour bus trade. There were at least a dozen tour buses parked outside.

Inside the hotel, we felt like we were had fallen through a hole in the earth and ended up in China or Japan. Nearly all of these tourists were asian. There were hundreds of them.

The hotel was smart enough to offer a really great deal to lone tourists like us in order to fill its excess capacity, so they gave us a deluxe room with a spa in the bathroom, plus dinner and breakfast for two, all for the price of a single room!

Here’s our personal bathroom spa:

But, first, we wanted to go down to the Turkish Bath and thermal pool. Amazingly, there was no one there…

…nor were they in the huge outdoor pool.

We went in the bath and thermal pool, then dressed and went to dinner. Aha! There there were, in the buffet line!

Also included in the price of the room was a belly-dancing show that night. Knowing that the Japanese are great fans of karaoke, we expected to see them participate in belly-dancing, so we decided to go to the show.

Oddly, there was only one table of orientals there, but there were a couple tables of europeans and Americans.

First, the belly-dancer did a solo performance.

Now, let me make a disclaimer: we do not normally do touristy things like this. But, then, we don’t normally stay in a spa hotel either, so we decided to play along.

After her solo performance, the belly dancer offered to give the women in the audience free belly-dancing lessons. Only one taker. Then she went for the men. Surprise, surprise: five willing students!

I was clearly the quickest learner. You put your left foot in, you put your left foot out…

Alas, no calls for an encore.

And when it was all over, our teacher came around for payment. I held out a 5 Lira note, but she wouldn’t take it. Rather, she shimmied up to me and pointed to where the tips go.

I swear, I’ve never done this before. Honest.

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