Tuesday, August 27, 2013


floating in the sea is easy
Deniz is the name of Suha's sister in law, it also means the sea.  I never know which they are talking about but I love them both!  Today, Baris(h) and Deniz took us to the sea.  We drove along the coast up in the mountains to a beautiful spot in a shallow cove at the sight of an ancient trading city with questionable morals.  Their women were known for imitating the hairstyle of an Egyptian goddess and their business thrived due to cheating and always getting a better deal than their counterparts.  They were plagued by malaria and wasps, which they blamed on the sailors, even though they lived next to a vast swampy area.

brothers having fun together

The drive there was beautiful, the mountains are indescribable.  Baris(h) kept pointing out things saying "jennyjennyjennyjennyjenny!"  They shoot straight up like the ones in Alaska but are rocky and rugged.  I got car sick on the way there, the road is very curvy and they drive like maniacs!!  I could sit in the front seat, I know it would help, but I cannot watch out the front.  It's too scary.  I don't want to know what hits us, if and when it ever happens.  I might be more apt to be hit while walking, cars follow no rules and only revert to the rules if there is no way then can fit, then they resort to who was right.  They constantly honk at each other, whether to say, excuse me, thank you, your turn, I need over there...etc.  I never know who is talking to who, it happens so much.

Baris and Ege
Digging his way out
an ancient bath house, the round disk stones are for sitting

Anyway, I arrived a bit queezy and after a short walk through beautiful trees and a crazy "parking lot" we arrived at the sea.  Baris(h) stuck our umbrella in the sand, Deniz covered Ege in sun screen and we got in and basically didn't get out for 5 hours. The sand was too hot to stand on long, the sea was so clear and salty, you could float for hours!! You could open your eyes without it stinging and you could see far underwater.  Baris(h) and I would go for swims till we couldn't touch, Ege spent an hour watering us all down with his water cannon.  He still isn't sure about me, which I am NOT used to.  But he did let me launch him into the water as Suha got tired of doing it.  "Yine! Yine!" (again! again!) After a second long swim out to some rocks where I cut the bottom of my foot, we got out and played in the sand.  Then Suha and I took a walk through the old ruins before we left to have lunch in Kemer (a very "high society" beach, shopping, 5 star hotel area)  I saw my first tourist trap camel and thankfully Suha did not keep his promise of making me ride it.  Ege took a crash and skinned his knees so our sight seeing tour was cut short.  He kept finding scratches and crying again.  Poor thing was so tired, he was a wreck anyway.  We took him home and put him in the bath.  Baris(h) took us home and stayed for dinner.  He reminds me of a big kid with a big heart, very animated and lovely person.  Life is always fun when he is around.  Tomorrow Deniz and him will celebrate their 6 year anniversary!!  They are a beautiful couple full of love and have the most adorable shy little boy.
I love old stones with ancient languages carved in them

Dinner was AMAZING of course.  She had a type of pilaf on the stove along with a yogurt, green lentil, homemade noodle soup and leftovers from a dinner we didn't eat last night of roasted kofte and vegetables.  The potatoes were like butter, the pilaf made me squeal with delight!!  It was made of barley!!  An entire pot of barley!!  It was like a dream come true.  My mother used to make moose stew and sprinkle some barley in it.  I used to chase the small white grain around the bowl like treasure and pick them all out and eat them first.  I told them, "a whole plate of barley to myself? I think I have died and gone to heaven!"  Always dinner is finished with melon and watermelon and grapes on the balcony in the breeze with tea.  A beautiful day for sure.

an old aquaduct

I asked Suha, can we have a quiet day tomorrow?  He said yes, we can sleep in and be lazy, then at 3 or 4, after the hot sun, we can walk to town and look for a calling card.  It is so hot here, the sun sucks the energy right out of you.  I love it though.  You are soaking wet all the time but warm and I almost want to chop my hair off...almost.

Anne and Baba always wave goodbye from the balcony

So it is tomorrow and we did have a lazy day, laundry, cleaning up, we eventually left the house and walked all over town.  We had tea by the sea again, my favorite place to sketch.  (I am keeping a sketching journal as well.)  We found an international calling card at the post office but after a couple hours of trying, we cannot figure out how to dial out so I missed my phone date with my parents.  At least I have internet for now :)  He took me to have my first cow intestines Kokorec(h) and the soup I can do without EVER tasting again.  It tasted how the old barn on the farm smells.  YUCK!  BUT!! The sandwhich which was made with the same kind of meat cooked a different way, tasted AMAZING!! The deep fried mussels were amazing too and the Iskender, like a doner kebab, bread, tomatoe paste sauce with a side of yogurt, to die for!!  We shopped for clothes and found some shorts for Suha.  I found that A: their sizing system is VERY different and B:  their sizes range for extra small to medium...not amazon alaskan style!
The view from our favorite tea garden

We came home to another beautiful meal of stuffed zucchini with yogurt.  When we walked in the door his parents asked if I had spoken with my parents.  I said no and the drama began.  Suha is in the dog house and is still hearing about how he couldn't do this one very important thing for me.  They say, we are parents, we know how important it is!  They are too sweet.  I am still being asked if my parents have gotten all the important information: I am safe, I am well, I am fed and loved.

sketching what I see...

His mother asks me to tell my mom, "Thank you for trusting our son and us to send your daughter so far to share her with us."  (I think they like me!)

Tomorrow is another EARLY morning, his parents are taking us to "deniz" the sea!!  I am spoiled!!

The mountains get me every time!!

Cow stomach soup, good for a hangover...so I'm told.

kokorec and fried mussles


Anne made stuffed zucchini!!!

...and zucchini cakes :)

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