Monthly Archives: November 2012

excuses, excuses

Forgive me for my absence, friends. The two months since I wrote you last have flown so fast my head is spinning. There’s been a great deal happening and I should have been recording it meticulously for posterity’s sake, but I didn’t, and I can only say… it’s not my fault. Blame:

  • Turk Telekom, for cutting my internet (for a total of 13 days)
  • İSKİ, for cutting my water (twice, for a total of 6 days)
  • That time I thought I had lice (false alarm)
  • That time I thought I had bed bugs (false alarm)
  • That time I really did get a violent stomach flu

I will just note here that, contrary to popular belief, living abroad is incredibly unglamorous.

But in all honesty, the reason I haven’t been blogging much is because my time in Turkey is rapidly drawing to a close, and I refuse to process that yet. It makes me feel a bit sick to my stomach. I am actively not thinking about my departure. I’m not going to talk about it.

I will say, though, since I’m making lists, that there are a few things I am looking forward to, if only because a year away has transformed the mundane into the novel. For instance, over the past 11 months, I have not:

  • Drunk tap water
  • Worn blue jeans
  • Driven a car
  • Eaten anything pork-related
  • Baked in an oven that didn’t plug into the wall
  • Flushed toilet paper without thinking about it first
  • Purchased fresh (as opposed to long-shelf-life) milk
  • Put wet clothes in a clothes dryer

The things I have done, of course, more than outweigh these–buying my bread hot from the oven of a morning, getting fresh-squeezed fruit juice pressed to order from street vendors, ferrying back and forth across the Bosphorus every single day–and I already grieve to think of giving them up. I’m going to miss everything: baklava, the call to prayer, public transportation, crappy beer, fist-fighting fishmongers… everything!

I’m not thinking about it.

Instead I will think about what to make for Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow, and whether or not I can incorporate persimmons.


Just one of several thousand things which, while I have them, I’ll be thankful for.