Monday, January 30, 2012

A Quick Jaunt South

Yesterday, LE and I returned from a short trip to Bodrum. He went to his Babaanne's and I came home to a catbox brimming with shit and a house so frigid I went to bed at 8 because I couldn't stand it anymore. This is how I rock and roll when I'm kid-free for a few days. Some other plan is clearly in order.

Walk for me, Johnny.

At least Johnny Walker Red was on sale at the liquor store. So coming back to a snowy mess wasn't a complete bust.

It really looks like this.

 Bodrum rocks in the winter. It's a good thing few people realize this, otherwise the plane tickets wouldn't have been so damn cheap. A dear friend of mine from Istanbul moved down there a few months back, so the main reason for going was to see her and let our kids (both around LE's age) raise hell for awhile. Raise hell they did. As soon as we started glowing about how nicely they were getting along, they immediately started bickering and crying a lot.

Cuter in Calvin & Hobbes.

Kids argue about really dumb stuff, seriously.

Mommy's friend.
Nonetheless, we managed to get in plenty of wine and enough grown-up talk to make our jaws seize up, if that sort of thing happened. Which it doesn't except in metaphors and cases of tetanus.

Anyway, their house is gorgeous and cozy, and I totally would have moved in, if they let me. Some houses are pretty because they're pretty. Other houses aren't so pretty but they're nice because they're full of love and good food. This house was both pretty and full of love and good food. So that alone made the visit worth it.

But then there were some things that were just icing on the cake.

Best Things About Bodrum, From Least Best To Most Best:

1) There's no one there except for nice Bodrum people, and our kids could play outside and on the beach. The beach was almost entirely free of broken glass. My kid, predictably, didn't quite get why it's not such a good idea to go in the water when it's 55 degrees outside, but was happy enough with some pants-free beach time. Only one teyze bawled me out for this, kidneys you know, but she was satisfied with my promise that I would give him a bath as soon as we got home.

When the kids got suspiciously quiet for a long time, this is what they were doing.

I was completely amazed!
Normally, when your kid says, "Mama, come see the surprise!" you die inside a little, but sometimes it's actually a great surprise. Just as kids can become more obnoxious when there's more than one kid, they also become cooler in groups and get really great ideas. If only this power could be harnessed somehow. The most important part of this wall in LE's mind was all the little stones buried in holes around the base. I have to point that out, obviously, because how else would you know?

2) Bergamot.
It's not an ugly lemon.
I mean, I know about bergamot from essential oils but I've never had the pleasure of coming into contact with one. Bergamot alone is reason enough to move to the Aegean. I couldn't stop picking them up and smelling them. My friend must have suspected I have a disorder of some sort. I had some of the juice alone and it tasted like grapefruit and sweet lemon and sunshine. Then my friend mixed it with mandarin orange juice and it tasted like sunshine and happiness. Then she served it warm for breakfast and I wanted to cry it was so good.

3) Meeting, in person, Jack Scott and Liam of Perking the Pansies fame. They're just dear. Several times I regretted bringing the kid along because I could have hung out with them over drinks until the sun went down and came back up again. They're way more interesting in person than on the blog, which is saying something because they manage to come off as pretty interesting on the blog too.

I got a signed copy. Hooray!
I'd originally planned to interview Jack and further plug his book for him, but that didn't work out because I suck at asking people questions. It's weird because I always want to know stuff about people but I feel funny asking questions. Also because the kids had some issue or other that needed dealing with every 10 minutes or so. Every 30 seconds if you count LE's repeated fits about not getting to have Sprite with his lunch. Then he broke his glass on accident and got to have Sprite after all, which I should have done in the first place because there was nary a peep from him after that.

Jack broke the ice by asking why BE and I split up. I totally like it when people don't hold back on the good stuff and when they're better at asking questions than I am. But LE was next to me and, though I've been pretty honest with him about the whole divorce thing, he doesn't need to know everything just yet, especially not the stuff about his dad that would either confuse him or that he would report back to BE and Babaanne. So I was pretty reticent about explaining, which isn't like me at all because pretty much anyone who will listen knows every gritty, excruciating detail about the failure of my marriage.

And after a few moments of obligatory shyness and hiding between my legs, LE took to Jack and Liam immediately. The kids even started fighting over them for piggy-back rides. LE's liking strangers on the first meeting hardly ever happens, though I do notice a trend of him having a big soft spot for gay men. Or maybe he just really likes men. Or misses them. Men are definitely more fun, in both of our humble opinions, but for different reasons entirely.

So maybe I feel a little guilty for removing the man in LE's life from our house, okay? Also for enjoying it so damn much.

Yesterday, we left Bodrum with plans to come back during Ramazan when it's cheap, empty, and hot. I can't imagine how it could be a better trip, but I bet it will be.


Liam Brennan said...

A real winter highlight, meeting you and the boy. You're the real deal. We're waiting for Ramazan.

Stranger said...

Hooray! A reason to look forward to Ramazan! That's a Turkey first.

Though I do quite like Ramazan pide. And the iftar stuff my neighbor brings up. But this is way better.

Jack Scott said...

It was a delight meeting you and the boy. Great fun. I hope I didn't come across as too nosey! Thank you for being so nice about us. I'm flattered!

Stranger said...

Not at all nosy! Nosy is the teyze instructing me about LE's health. Curious in a nice way is totally cool with me...


Anonymous said...

I'm going to be nosy, and ask what's up with the teyze and the kidneys...? Is that anything like wearing slippers so that the ovaries don't get cold, or putting a sliced tomato on a burn?

Stranger said...

It's kind of like the ovaries thing. Getting cold and having cold feet apparently cause, among other things, kidney infections, kidney stones, and urinary tract infections...