Sunday, September 2, 2012

Baklava vs Bugs

I know I promised pictures from Ephesus. I am experimenting with those in a new-ish software, so I want to play a bit first, then will upload.

In the meantime, I leave you with a few funny quotes/anecdotes/randomness from the summer.

A butterfly in my friend's garden

Taxi Drivers

I learned a lot from the taxi drivers of Istanbul.  I improved my Turkish, learned that not everyone thinks politically, learned that a good taxi driver will go out of his way for you, and I learned how to navigate the back roads of Istanbul - so well that sometimes I could get around better than my native husband.

I also learned they are not often afraid to ask questions...

Coming back from the Princess Islands one day we decided to taxi the rest of the way home from the Asian side of the city.  My son fell asleep during the ferryboat ride, so we carried him to the taxi. The first question upon entry, "Is that child yours?"  Kidnapping is no joke, but do we really look like the type that would just pick up a random sleeping child?  I don't think he meant that, but I am not sure what he meant, if anything.

"Boy or girl".  I'll give him this one because my son does have a full head of hair and had not had a haircut for a few weeks.  The best inquiry was yet to come during the long ride to our destination across the Bosphorus.

We were with a good friend who is a cardiac surgeon.  Since we all have a healthcare background, we were talking shop.  Once the taxi driver caught on that he was a surgeon, he asked, "So is smoking bad for you?  I gave up drinking, but I still smoke."  Note, this was not the occasional social smoker.  He smokes.  

The Turkish anti-smoking campaign with pictures of corpses, black lungs and the like on cigarette packs have not given it away just yet.  It seems like a question our friend gets a lot so rather than reacting, he paused for a second and very calmly answered, "It's better if you don't smoke".  

My son, the party boy

While in Bodrum, we were fortunate enough to be there to celebrate a good friend's 40th birthday with her.  It was a great party in the beautiful garden of her summer home.  There were maybe 100 or so people, live music, a DJ, lots and lots of dancing.  Erin did not hold back and much to my and everyone's surprise, danced most of the night.  We left very late and he did not want to go even though it was beyond late.  

As we started to leave he asked, "Mommy, can I have a party like this when I turn five?" 

It left a lasting impression because the next night as we were going to dinner he asked, "Are we going to another party?"

Fortunately, he was accepting of the quieter family dinner.... for now.

Amateur Macro Lens User

That would be me, testing out my new macro lens.  I had these romantic visions of shooting lady bugs and bumblebees in the sunflower fields of Sarkoy.  

Erin and I did go on bug hunts.  He found a praying mantis once - unfortunately no macro on the camera at the time.  Outside of that it was pretty standard: ants and rocks.  

One morning, I came across a small spider hanging from a pomegranate tree in my mother-in-law's garden.  I thought this would be a great way to check out my new lens capabilities.

Apparently, he wanted to give me an extreme close up.  He jumped onto my camera!  I shrieked in a very embarrassing, girly way and moved away very quickly.  Translation: I did that girly bug dance.  "I hate spiders, so why am I trying to take their pictures?"  

I did not seek out any more spiders.  Chasing the above butterfly in a friend's garden was very therapeutic (even without a macro), but in general I just might prefer pictures of homemade baklava over of insects.

After all, wouldn't you rather eat baklava instead of bugs?

Homemade Baklava!!!

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