How Many Turks does it take to change a light bulb?

Last weekend was The Turk’s birthday.  I am not allowed to say just how old he is however Daughter has been known to him a moruk (geezer) so you make a guess.  I looked around the Wonderful World Wide Web for a few historical snippets relating to his birthdate of 7 December to reference in his birthday card but no one really famous – well no one I knew anyway – was born (or died) on 7 December.  7 December has the ominous distinction of being the day that the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbour – 7 December 1941 – but this was to be a celebratory day and I do not want to bring down his groove.

There was no chance of a lie in for The Turk on his birthday as the electricity had blown (yet again).  I reset the system again and attempted to put on the heater but it blew almost immediately.  At 7 on Saturday morning it was 4 degrees and with no air con or heater . . . well let me just say it was cold.  So I woke The Turk up to complain and for him to let Hurley out (after all it was way too cold for me and I crawled straight back into bed).  He was very proactive about it though and by 8 am he had left the house to have a shave and to go and track down the electrician who installed our wiring.  I went to buy the bread and when I had returned The Turk had arrived back home freshly shaved and with a boy in tow.

“This is the electrician?” Thank goodness he didn’t speak English although I would think the disbelief in my tone would be clear after all the child standing before me could be no more than 18 years of age (I concede he may be an adult but no way he is an electrician).  The “cocuk (child) electrician” had a long conversation with The Turk and explained that the issue is not with the electrical it is with the air conditioning unit.  Can I holler balderdash?

So most of the morning was spent listening firstly to the cocuk electrician explain why there was nothing wrong with the wiring, and the air con people came and told us that it was the electrical system.  Now I may not Benjamin Franklin but it does not take a fool to tell you there is a problem if you are shorting out 10 times a day!  The cocuk electrician left unsatisfied however promised that his elder brother (who I was guessing is the actual electrician) would return in the afternoon.  The Turk’s birthday was definitely turning into a disaster so before any other calamity presented itself Daughter and I grabbed him and took him into Mersin for a celebratory lunch at Cigeri Apo.

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To truly experience a typical Turkish restaurant in Mersin you cannot get any better than Cigeri Apo.  It specialises in meats cooked over the coals and the menu, although very simple, is delicious.  I was pretty unsure about the choices (The Turk mentioned lung at one stage) so I kept it pretty basic with an order of beef kebap and he ordered unknown meat on the skewer.  Within minutes 5 different salads were delivered to our table along with a glass of Ayran for each of us.  Ayran is a Turkish drink of yogurt, salt and water blended into a thick shake.  Although refreshing on a hot day Ayran tastes pretty good any time of year.

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After a wonderful lunch we wandered down to Ataturk Park and hopped on a harbour cruise that was about to leave.  In hindsight this was probably a mistake as it was freezing on the harbour but it was reasonably short and we were rugged up sufficiently well.  Although the cruise did not leave the harbour it gave us views of the dull city skyline, Luna Park and the Free Trade Zone.

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Returning home the cocuk electrician’s brother arrived and he checked the circuits.  Watching the actual electrician with The Turk I started to wonder whether they would ever get to the bottom of the electrical faults.  Hmmmm.  The Turk said to me later on Saturday evening that watching me trying to control my agitation with the electrician was the best birthday present he could have received (well that and Fenerbache winning their futbol match on Saturday night).

All in all a good day for The Turk.

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