A word from a broad…

One word? Magic.

Delightful company*, delicious adventures, and decadent relaxation.

Declared a ‘down day’ while staying with The Girl in Izmir, Turkey. This, after four days in Istanbul, three in Capadoccia, and a weekend by the sea in Bodrum.

Several epiphanies – large and small. Mostly enjoying spending time with the woman i birthed almost 27 years ago. Trying to figure out how i can be just like her when i grow up.

Not my photo...

* Studley has accompanied me on this trip, as The Boy is working. We have become “Turkish Toddlers, 2.0”, since The Girl has had to keep us from bickering, make sure we have enough beer, and keep us from walking out into traffic.

Baby’s Day Out

We’ve been camping in Izmir, Turkey for about four days. The Boy and i crashing on sofas in the living room in the fairly small apartment The Girl shares with one of her fellow teachers here. Although she was able to get a substantial chunk of time off work to babysit entertain us, she had to go to work this afternoon.

She’s been a fabulous guide for the past two weeks, showing us some amazing sites while teaching the basics of life in Turkey. The plan for today? The Boy and i would have a “down day” in the apartment while she and her roomie went to work. Plus, it’s definitely time to do some laundry.

The Girl was scared shitless about leaving us alone.

This morning, she fussed over every detail. How to open the doors. Which keys go where. How to lock the doors. How to close the doors without making a terrible noise and annoying the neighbors. How to run the washing machine.

Our plan was to go to the grocery store next door, buy some basics, and spend the afternoon cleaning the apartment top to bottom. She coached us again on how to say “I don’t speak Turkish”, and that the cashier would ask if we wanted a store loyalty card. Reminded us how to say “No”.

As she was preparing to leave, The Boy and i noted that we felt like latch-key children, being left on their own for the first time.

The Girl: Yeah… Kinda like two giant toddlers who like beer and cigarettes.

As she left, we prepared our game plan, and grocery list, for the day. Venturing out, we were going over roles and responsibilities. It’s my job to work the conversational bits, and he’s got the key/door thing down.

The Boy: Between the two of us, we’re like one functional person.

daisyfae: Almost…

But we did it. Remembering the type of cheese The Girl likes. Sorting through the aisle of cleaning supplies and figuring out which is for windows and which is for countertops (cleverly marked with pictures of windows and countertops, by the way). Me asking for cigarettes at the checkout… Picked up a store loyalty card, and was even able to take advantage of a special on bananas! 2kg* for 1 Turkish Lire!

The Boy fixed lunch while i started cleaning. “Start at the top and work your way down”. Didn’t take too long, and we were pretty proud of the results. Plenty of time to shower and relax before we make our way to the bus stop, and wait for the 209 this evening… Hopefully finding our way to her office to meet her after work for drinks!


Two very enterprising toddlers at Ephesus yesterday. Home to some seriously old shit…

* And that’s a metric shit ton of bananas, by the way…

Turkish delight

When my children were entering their ‘double digit’ years, i had an opportunity to take them to Germany to visit a niece living there. Wanting them to learn to be citizens of the world, it was a good opportunity to take them overseas.

My ex-husband was not particularly interested in going, so it was just the three of us. With assistance from my niece, i did the planning and logistics. Flying into Frankfurt, i rented a car. And the adventure began… It was up to me to get us there, and back.

Doing my crash course in “German for Tourists” in the weeks before the trip, i was reasonably prepared for navigating in a foreign country. Didn’t hurt that i’d been there a few times before. It also didn’t hurt that in southwestern Germany, most people speak English. Together, we worked on a few important vocabulary words. Mostly, the kids would tail behind me like ducklings, eyes wide open, taking it all in.

The next year, they wanted to do it again, so we went to England. On that trip – without a significant language barrier – we did a lot more improvisation. Four days in London as we decided where to go next. A conversation with a taxi driver led us to a train station, and a few days exploring Devon and Cornwall.

Our spring holidays continued, with visits to San Francisco, Santa Barbara, and Arizona before they were out of high school and far too cool old to travel with their mother. It was great fun to share some of my favorite places with my own spawn.

Arriving in Istanbul early Thursday morning, The Boy and i made it through the airport and found our driver at baggage claim. The Girl had arrived Wednesday, and was waiting at the hotel. After a short siesta, we headed out into the city.

Although she complains that after living in the country for six months, her Turkish should be better, The Girl is out front this time. Ordering meals, explaining the history of the Turks, navigating from a map in her iPod, translating ancient Ottoman hieroglyphics.

And teaching us important words and phrases…


“Good Morning”

“Thank You”

“Three beers, please”

Tonight, at the Grand Bazaar, The Boy fell in love with an incredibly goofy lovely hat. Taking advantage of closing time, and her newly acquired skills, she was able to haggle with the vendor. From his original offer of 110 Turkish Lire, she got him down to 70. And The Boy joyfully collected his wares.

Tomorrow? Another day out. Since it will be raining, she’s taking us to the Blue Mosque, and then off to see the art museums on the Asian side of the city.

i will continue to follow behind like a duckling. Practicing my new vocabulary. Eyes wide open. Taking it all in.