Fourteenth Turkey Epistle

Fourteenth Turkey Epistle


We continue to meet wonderful people. One day at breakfast I invited a man on his own to join us for breakfast. He and his family were here to investigate universities for their oldest son. He was saying that because all the Arabic languages are so related that his son will be able to learn Turkish in 3 months – I was so-o-o—o envious! He went to say that he might even move his business here. I asked him what it was and when he said he was an audiologist I suggested that Murray could perhaps become his first client!

Then, on another day, we went to Engin and Mine’s home for a barbecue with a few others from the church. This was especially nice on two levels. first of all, it was interesting to go to a newer neighbourhood – about 40 years old. A change from the ancient areas we always seem to frequent. Secondly, it was to be with people from here in a purely social situation.

Nurhan and Kim are a lovely couple from Church. Nurhan teaches Math at the university and is a Turk of Armenian background. Kim is an American taking her doctorate in Ethno music. Both exercise leadership roles in the church. We had tea with them. They live relatively close to us so we were able to walk to a central spot to meet. Lovely to talk about all the things in our lives.


June 24th was our wedding anniversary! We started the day by going to the Hilton for bacon and an omelet. Sitting in the garden, we had freshly squeezed orange juice and wonderful coffee. One of the realities here is confusion when ordering things because of the language difference. We ended up with an American, double espresso and cappuccino. this was followed by 2 Turkish coffees in the lounge courtesy of the hostess in honour of our anniversary. Honey was available in a real honeycomb and we were able to have brown toast! Little luxuries.

In the evening we went out for dinner at the Kafka (after Franz Kafka) restaurant and cafe. There is an open air terrace on the fifth floor. What a panorama – the Bosphorous and then beyond that the skyline with the Blue Mosque, Haiga Sofia and the Topkapi Palace. Ros and Yuce joined us – very special to have new friends to celebrate with us. And of course, amazing food!

I’m a Blond!

I thought it was time for me to have a pedicure after all the walking we’ve been doing. The manager of our hotel took me to a place quite near here and directed them to give me a manicure AND pedicure. Well, that was okay. A lovely lady with the usual tea and lots of sign language. then the stylist, with sign language, suggested my hair need help. He was right of course but it not the type of negotiation one should do without a dictionary – I am now a blond! He said, “In Canada – brunette, this – (pointing to my head), Turkey. It is fun and funny. People are being very kind and complimentary 🙂


Murray and I both brought our wide brimmed hats to protect our delicate skin from the Turkish sun – but it seems we are almost the only ones in all of Istanbul wearing them. One smart pants said as we were passing, :Hey cowboy, where’s your horse?).



4 thoughts on “Fourteenth Turkey Epistle

  1. Jeannie Hallstead

    Hi Diana,

    I enjoyed a cup of tea on our deck in the beautiful sunshine as I read your last 4 epistles. I printed them out because I find that I always savour letters more when I read them on paper. Somehow the computer insists on fast and “savouring” isn’t in computer speak.

    As always I thoroughly enjoyed hearing about your adventures, Diana. I really hope that you will put all your epistles together in a book with pictures. I think that it will be a memory you will treasure. We’ve been impressed with Picaboo. I think that you will also need a separate book for Italy.

    Continue to enjoy and record! I love your blond hair. Very summer European!

    We spent Canada Day up at Shawnigan Lake with the family. It was a beautiful warm day here. It was great to be swimming again and in such a lovely location. Diana, you have such delightful grandchildren! We will all be going up to Shawnigan in the 19th for 6 days to stay in two cottages ( the noisy one and the quiet one off the lake for Doug and I and David and Angie, by then starting her last month. We can enjoy the bustle during the day and then retreat at a reasonable hour in the evening).

    My week in Winnipeg was intensive but good. I am so glad that I went. Jake’s funeral was the day after I arrived, talk about timing. I made my reservations months ago! I wouldn’t have missed Gabrielle’s graduation celebrations, including the 3 hour grant Park convocation. It made me realize how much I want to be at Natalie and Jessica’s convocation next year. Poor old Winnipeg seemed very weary. After the winter they endured June has gone on to be one of the wettest months on record! The city was very green but standing water everywhere and shaggy, unmowed lawns. It was also unusually cool last week which I didn’t mind but also very humid. I have really gotten used to the lower humidity and the bright sunny summer weather we have here in Victoria. It was great to see old friends and to go to St Aidan’s and meet David Labdan. He certainly seems to be an excellent choice. You will really see a difference in Jim Slater. He has slowed down so much in the two years since I last saw him. I do hope you get a chance for a short visit. The situation with Dianne, Janella and Rylea is pretty depressing. I won’t even go into details. It was good just to be able to be with Dianne and encourage her and when we could, to laugh together. I wouldn’t try for a visit there, not that I think you would. Sometimes you just have to hand people you love but can’t help over to the Lord.

    On that note thank you for your concern about my brother. Apparently he is on a waiting list for treatment. I am going to see if my doctor will authorize a chest X-ray for me. Tom’s cancer came out of nowhere. We both grew up with the same second hand smoke, apparently my Mom and Dad smoked up to 4 packs of cigarettes a day when we were young! It would be good to get a base line for myself.

    Sorry to be so uncheery. Keep your epistles coming. Hard to believe you only have 2 weeks left, the time seems to have gone so quickly. I am really looking forward to your adventures in Italy. Illa Barber is really appreciating your blog. I told her about it when she said that she would be in Turkey this fall. I am sure she has replied to you.

    Love to you and your dear Murray, Adventure on!



  2. Mary-Anne

    Hi Diana,
    I finally have a few moments to sit down and put my feet up and to savour your stories. I am so happy to read about your adventures and visualize your life there. This is the best summer reading I have had for quite a while! I am enjoying every minute of it.
    Thank you for taking the time and effort to write all this down.
    p.s. You and Murray look absolutely wonderful in the photo. Blond suits you!
    Love to you both,


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