Oct 25, 2007

snaps of turkey: selcuk

a large percentage of turkey's pupulation still makes it's living through agriculture. we saw a lot of people using tractors as their main form of transportation. nice parking job with this one in the heart of town.

the view over the countryside by selcuk, from the ruins of the basilica of st.john.

still at the basilica, a great view of the the citadel on the hillside in the distance, which sadly is closed to the public due to the lack of structural integrity.

al fresco dining at a small restaurant on a side street overlooking the site of one of the 7 wonders of the ancient world - the temple to artemis. however, to see any artifacts of the temple, one must go to the british museum. the site is now a very famous grassy field. dinner was tasty, and removed from the more touristy part of town.

nate's pictures from selcuk

Oct 19, 2007

snaps of turkey: airport and izmir

my first taste of turkey. hot, strong tea and a not-too sweet pastry filled with sesame paste and topped with sesame seeds. i think i'm gonna like it here.

stelfi is the brand of bathroom hardware favored at the airport. elefants everywhere! i know i'm gonna like it here.

after a flight from istanbul to izmir and a good night's rest, we explored some of Izmir (formerly known as Smyrna). we walked through the bazaar and ended up at this big square.

we checked out the aegean and walked along the coast briefly. besides the sea, and a few back alleys, we weren't all that keen on what we saw and had no plans to stick around. so we busted out of Izmir towards the greener pastures of Selcuk.

nate's pictures on the road to turkey
nate's pictures from izmir

Oct 16, 2007


for the first time i put on grandma's robe that mom carried all the way from florida for me. it smells of her, whatever that combination is: laundry detergent, the soft sarasota water, her soap, the clean body smell that's hers alone. instantly i felt security, followed by great heaving pain. i miss her quite excruciatingly. and this lovely, warm scent i'm literally wrapped in maddeningly both makes me feel better and so much worse.

Oct 15, 2007

Oldy McOlderson

a few days in and so far thirty is pretty darn good.

Oct 12, 2007


there's something not quite right in my system. i fought off the weird tummy thing, and now i think i'm harboring regular old cold germs. or something. i feel crappy, and i just slept the better part of twelve hours. i haven't caught up on putting laundry away or cleaning and i made just a small dent in the readings i should have completed by 5:30 tonight. another dose of that salty alka seltzer plus is on the way.

Oct 10, 2007

in rainbows

happy radiohead new album release day!

in case you haven't heard, they've been causing a major ruckus with their latest approach to distribution. a website was created to take orders for a digital copy. unique links to use for downloading sent via email after your order is processed. and each consumer pays what they wish for the pleasure.

apparently i've been out of the country for a few weeks - according to nate's mom, this has been featured heavily in the news. i only heard about it because katy knows i need my radiohead fix.

if you're interested in getting your own copy, head over to www.inrainbows.com

Oct 9, 2007

my homegirl knows how to treat a homegirl right

katy came by to drop off my mail key after having taken care of groundskeeper duties for the two weeks i was in turkey. she also had in her purse a super duper special sarah treat - mallowmars! nothing manmade better heralds the coming of fall than mallowmars on supermarket shelves. and nothing better lines my tummy. yum!

my man knows how to treat a lady right

after catching sharon jones and the dap-kings on npr again on sunday and missing their show in boston while we were out of town, i was primed to go purchase their album. but nate beat me to it and surprised me by gifting me their 2006 album through itunes while i was in the shower this morning. what a guy!

Oct 8, 2007

pcitures/no pictures and tastes of turkey

nate has pictures up from our two week turkish adventure! and he will be adding more soonly.

i, on the otherhand, have barely just loaded my snaps to my desktop, and will require more time. in the meantime, some quick and dirty highlights from our trip:

boston to london to istanbul to izmur - all by plane. we arrive tired and ready to sleep. the inn-keeper insists on turning on our tv to a turkish soap opera, and standing in our room to watch for a minute or so. our first night in turkey and we start awake to what we think are gunshots. nate thinks it could be backfires or potentially the izmirian way of providing the early-morning wake up sounding call for ramadan. sounded like gunshots to me.

izmur - we wander around the bazaar, eat mini-burgers of lamb (kofte) at a corner eatery where nobody speaks english except the recruited restauranteur from next door, and visit the aegean sea. on our way out of town towards selcuk we get taken for a ride, both literally and figuratively. nate can tell that story.

selcuk - a landlocked town next door to the ruins at efes (ephesus) where we hang out hat (nate) and head scarf (me) for a few nights. it has it's own ruins of st. john's basilica, which have been/are being restored by an evangelical group from ohio (sweet!), and also hosts the isa bey mosque, built in the 14th century. nate and i peeked inside, but didn't stay too long. we also ate at an outdoor garden restaurant within spitting distance of the ancient temple of artemis (one of those no-longer-standing wonders of the world). of course, we visited efes, too, and were suitable awed. then we ran for cover as the sun beat down too hot and the hordes of tourists made us claustrophobic. too bad we couldn't hang around until winter for the camel wrestling championships.

fethiye - hooray! we make it to the mediterranean area, also know as the turquoise coast. not as big a resort town as boddrum or alanya, it's still pretty touristy along the waterfront - jampacked with seafood-laden restaurants and moored gulets and yachts ready for hire. we gaze happily at the sea and mountains from our hotel, wander the coastline, and take a day trip to the abandoned ruins of kayakoy, a mountain-top town which was relieved of it's christian inhabitants of greek ancestry around the 20s, and replaced with muslim macedonians who decided they weren't happy with the new digs. we scrambled around for hours, and stood at the look out tower at the apex - turning left to look down at the town, and turning right to peer into the clear blue waters of the mediterreanean. dockside fethiye is also where nate and i killed a 2.5 liter bottle of orange-flavored potently-carbonated chemical sludge called fruko and had a burping contest.

antalya - to reach antalya we stoically survived a stormy night of bus travel which included 7 or 8 hours of the air filled with loud incantations, mutterings, and crazed outburts of a sadly disturbed woman who spoke in tongues and cursed everyone in sight and may have been a witch. nate tamed her and may be a shaman. he will have to tell that story, too. another seaside town, this time much bigger and grander with a much more sophisticated tourist feel. outside the old city was a bustling modern metropolis. and by modern, i mean dated to the 60s or 70s. we changes accomodations after a night of rock-hard mattresses and waterbugs sightings in the bathroom. our new mama in antalya gave us a break on a room and mother-henned us with all her might. we took a long walk to the pebble beach for some people-watching and swimming in the sea. vendors came around with corn on the cob, and a lady caused an exciting scene as she brought her horse to the water. the horse neither wanted to drink nor, apparently, swim. they left soon after all the kids fed the beast the remains of their cobs. antalya is home to hadrian's gate, and a very nice all-you-can-eat buffet at the hotel Alp Pasa. we also watched amusement park rides in action, and a potential secret-policer shakedown of a gang of teenagers in a playground - looked suspiciously like 21 jumpstreet.

goreme - away from the coast and into the heart of anatolia, we arrive early in the morning to see a sky full of hot air balloons floating lazily amonst the weather-worn rocky outcrops that resemble nothing i've ever seen before. goreme touts pension after pension of cave rooms for you to stay in. some of them even real and not from cement or concrete! we have a lovely time for three relaxing days. we scramble and hike around the hills and into caves and take a lot of pictures of spaces that look like adobe huts on acid. we meet up with ann, also from cambridge, ma. we rent mountain bikes and go for a cruise to avanos, famous for it's pottery. nate tries his hand at the pottery wheel, and we pedal our way from avanos to urgup, going through devrent valley. ann and i walk our bikes in a few tough spots. we all chat with a tour group from iran, and we all get back to goreme good and freckled. ann and i both take advantage of the hamam for a traditional turkish bath, though on different days. nate and i rent a motorbike to visit the underground city in nigde. nate and i play a few games of backgammon.

istanbul - you know, the bosphorus, the sea of marmara, the blue mosque, the aya sofia, the city walls, the grand bazaar... we also get travel tummy on our last day and have to cut some of our itinerary short. a shame, but as grandma would say, always leave something for next time. however, we did get to wander around the area between the blue mosuq and the aya sofia around sunset - festival every night with picnickers ready to end their fast as soon as the sun said goonight. vendors and people everywhere. quite nice.

istanbul to london - after getting to the airport early, we almost miss our flight. several trips to the bathroom.

6 hours in heathrow - after triangulating, we get to spend several of them over lunch with diana, which is a great bonus. get to see bathrooms here, too.

london to boston - sleeping and eating and running down the aisle to the bathroom.

ah, boston - manage to stay awake until about 11pm. good to see our own bathrooms again.

Oct 6, 2007

veronica in uganda

veronica will be living and working in uganda all october. read her blog here. (i've also added her blog to my links section.)

we're home!

i forgot about bananas on my counter which went all black, and the apartment smelled musty, but windows are open, and rotten fruits have been thrown out. we are decompressing and downloading photos to post as soon as we can. shout outs to miss diana for meeting us at heathrow airport for a mini-visit, to wolfram for helping us find each other, and to dave for the airport pick up. more very soon...

Oct 5, 2007

alive and well

it's the last day for us in turkey. we'll be at the ataturk international airport at 7am tomorrow, so today we are off to cram in as much istanbul as we can manage. on our list: the aya sofia, the sultanhamet camii, a ferry on the bosporus, visiting the asian side of the city, the grand bazaar, and maybe some time to just look around and reflect on the past two weeks.

pictures will be coming, both mine and nate's. emails and phone calls, too.