Springtime

Hello! I wanted to do a quick summary of the spring time. Sadly spring has gone and now the hot summer has arrived – ugh! Luckily our house always has a cool side – in the morning I’m on one side of the house and as the sun moves I move to a different side. Everything is still great with the house, every week we manage to add something new. The most recent is lots of flowers on the balcony, which I’ll show you in the next blog post.

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Waffle in Bebek, down by the Bosphorus.

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We love going to Bogazici University, where I studied abroad temporarily, and sitting on the grass and sleeping/reading/drinking tea. Cengiz also teaches a private boxing lesson there with a married couple, so sometimes I tag along and read while he does that.

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As most of you know, every year I go to Emirgan park and look at the tulips. I never get tired of it – they really are amazing. This year, just recently, there have been some beautiful roses. Normally I don’t like roses but these were spectacular. Many of the paths entering the apartments in my neighborhood had a trellis going over them, just exploding with roses. I regret not getting any pictures!

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On our cute little balcony.

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We had the pleasure of my mom’s friend’s daughter and husband coming through Istanbul – they stayed with us before and after their loop through Turkey and they were fun and easy house guests. They were here as we had our first breakfast on the big balcony!

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If/when you come to Istanbul and go to the Suleymaniye Mosque, stop and eat kuru fasulye (white beans in a tomato sauce) at Ali Baba – quite delicious!

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Maybe if you are lucky you can play with a kitty!!

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Inside of the mosque.

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We had Cengiz’s brother’s car for the weekend so we went to the Belgrade Forest, a place I have been curious about but it’s really only accessible by car. It was only about 25 minutes from the house and it really is like you are in a different place. Tons of trees, a 6k walking path, a lake (not good for swimming) and tons of places to barbeque. I would definitely return here to get some fresh air and exercise.

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It was one of my favorite times of the year – Eurovision! Countries in Europe and the near vicinity submit a song and compete, and voters in these countries vote for their favorite, although not for their own country’s. Usually it is quite political, for example, Sweden gives most of it’s votes to Norway, Azerbaijan to Turkey etc but this year I thought it was much less that. Turkey actually didn’t participate because they were boycotting the idea that the top 5 countries (France, Spain, Italy, Germany and the UK) don’t have to go through the semis (where you can be eliminated) but instead they go automatically to the finals. Whoever wins has to host the contest the next year, so I think the poorer counties submit some crazy songs so they don’t have to! It’s a lot of fun – some songs are good (Malta was pretty good), some are ridiculous (check out Romania’s and Moldova’s) – this year’s winner was Denmark and I really enjoyed the song actually.

Anyway, that’s it for now! I hope I’ll update soon with some flower pictures. Thanks for reading!

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