Daughter’s Big Bang Theory

As my regular followers will no doubt recall Daughter has come to blows with the Din Öğretmeni (Religion Teacher) more than once regarding her religious beliefs so this following tale should not surprise many of you.

Yesterday in Din Daughter’s Öğretmen explained to the students that they should not put up “Noel” trees as it allows students to be influenced by consumerism brought into favour by western influences.  During the months of December and January students should concentrate on their scriptures and on learning about Allah.  One of Daughter’s friends piped up and said that Daughter had a Noel tree and Daughter said, “No I have a Christmas tree”.

The conversation went down a little like this:

Öğretmen:          Are you Catholic?

Daughter:            No.

Öğretmen:          Is your father?

Daughter:            No.  He is Muslim.

Öğretmen:          Is your mother?

Daughter:            (plainly being a pain in the ass) No.  She is a practicing Buddhist.

Well at that point the Öğretmen went bright red and Daughter was certain that she was going to have a conniption.  All around Daughter kids were giggling and Daughter was, of course, enjoying the limelight immensely.

Öğretmen:          Well what religion are you?

Daughter:            I don’t believe in one God.

Öğretmen:          (clearly bothered by this statement) What?

Daughter:            I do believe in a higher entity.  I do believe in good versus evil.  I don’t believe that there is one right or wrong God or one right or wrong religion.

Öğretmen:          But who made you?

Daughter:            My Mum and Dad.

At this stage the class were laughing hysterically and the Öğretmen realises that they have moved from a Religious class to a Sex Ed class.

Öğretmen:          But who made the birds and the flowers and the trees?

Daughter:            It all started with the Big Bang – BANG!

big bang

The Turk has been called up to the school this morning.  He is wishing he stayed in Australia right now.  I am glad I am not going as I find the whole thing hilarious!

BANG!

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The Return of the Turk

I had many, MANY comments and remarks regarding this recent post about The Turk.  Most of the comments were very positive but there were a few that, well frankly, scared me out of my socks.  Internet trolling at its very best.

Now I want to start by saying that I don’t make this shit up!  It is just too ridiculous to even contemplate so, after a short drumroll – rat tat tat tat – I give you a new story.

The Turk left Sydney at 6 am on Tuesday morning – so about 9 pm Monday night Turkish time.  He was upgraded – lucky buggar – and spent the first 13 hours of his journey sequestered in business class and enjoying all the luxuries associated with such a class.  After a 4 hour stopover in Dubai he continued his flight onto Istanbul arriving shortly after 5 pm last night.  Yes Australia is a long way from Turkey – and he’s not even home yet.

He gave me a quick call from Istanbul saying he was feeling a bit poorly.  He had a headache and had had a bleeding nose on the second part of his journey.  Well me being me I immediately started to have a freak out but he told me he was fine and was waiting on his connecting flight which was to have him arrive in Adana at 10 pm.

His brother Akan went to Adana to meet him while I stayed home and made lamachun and salads for his arrival.  11 pm came and went.  Midnight came and went. 1 am, 2 am – they both came and went.  His brother’s mobile was turned off.  The Turk’s mobile was not yet connected so that was not working.  Where the feck was he?

Had he had a heart attack and was in hastanesi?  Had the plane gone down?  Had they had an accident driving home through the torrential rainfall that we had over the past 24 hours?  Holy crap!  He hasn’t signed my kimlik documents!  Yes I am sorry to say that that went through my head.

By 3 am I was completely having a meltdown.  We had not had any electricity for most of the day (and all of the evening) so I couldn’t even check on the internet if there was any news that I could integrate into my over active imagination (nightmares of flights over Ukraine come to mind here).

3.35 am and Akan’s truck pulls into the driveway.  Where the feck have you been?

Oh we went for corba!

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God give me the strength.

Anyway this morning he hands me a Duty Free bag.  Exciting.  Presents.  I know what you’re thinking.  Jewellery maybe or some French perfume?  Nope.  Three bottles of good Aussie plonk.

I know I might complain about The Turk a lot of the time, alright all of the time, but … he really gets me.

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I (Didn’t) Feel The Earth Move

We have had a few tremors here in Mersin over the past days.  To be completely honest with you I did not feel any of them when they struck despite being at the epicentre of the first quake in Mezitli on Saturday.

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One of the many haber sites that subscribe to sent me their news roundup this morning with a few vaguely boring posts which I glanced over but then one post stood out with its heading “City Wiped Off The Map”.

Um excuse me?

It seems that they were not actually talking about Mersin today, they were talking about Mersin or more specifically Soli Pompeipolis which was flattened by earthquake in 527AD.

Soooo not the earthquake that happened on Saturday yeah?

The next post went on to discuss a proposed nuclear power plant and its obvious danger should there be a sizable earthquake.  Now I don’t want to sound like a Negative Nancy but how sensible is it to build a nuclear power plant in a country that has earthquakes, real earthquakes not these little baby things that are currently niggling around.  Did we not learn anything from Japan?  Surely the all mighty dollar (or lira) is not more important that the environmental impact and potential danger to life?

Regardless this is definitely journalistic sensationalism at its very best.  Jeeze you would think it was Fox News or perhaps a Murdoch newspaper the way they were acting!

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10 Things I Hate About The Turk

Those of you who follow my blog will know that The Turk has been in Australia for a little over 3 months now.  His original plan of holidays and fun times down in Oz turned into a medical emergency and him being stuck in Australia until the Cardiologist gave him the all clear which, fortunately or unfortunately depending how you look at things, he got last Monday.  This means … yikes … he’s coming back in a few days!

kemal collage

I have enjoyed my single life immensely over the past few months.  I have enjoyed not sharing my bed (and the earth trembling snoring).  I have enjoyed ignoring the housework (as a good Turkish housewife should).  I have enjoyed my nights out without him and I have enjoyed my nights in without him.

I now realise that I will not only have to return to a life shared with him I also get to experience his crazy ass, typically Turkish, male antics again and so, in celebration of The Turk’s forthcoming return, I give you  – 10 things I hate about The Turk:

  • His Big Fat Turkish Ego! I think this one covers everything else on the list but his ego is the largest thing about him *nudge, nudge*.  He knows everything.  He can do anything.  He spends more time in front of the mirror than I ever have and he is the total male package.  I am sooo lucky.  He tells me so every, single day!
  • His Turkish Compass. Being Turkish and a male (or maybe just male) he will never get lost.  It is unheard of.  Impossible!  Rubbish!  And yet despite this unique ability that is akin to a superpower he can never find his kimlik.  Or his mobile.  Or his bloody wallet.  He is like a Tyrannosaurus Rex – can’t see the shit right in front of him!
  • His love of stomach turning Turkish food. Ick!  Eep!  Yikes!  With The Turk returning he will bring with him the insane need to cook sheep’s head or brain or liver or kidney or tripe.  I just vomited into my mouth.
  • His ability to act like a four year old boy. Like all Turkish men when it comes to a confrontation with their wife, The Turk will run away with his tail between his legs. He will disappear for hours on end and turn his telephone off.  All this achieves is that I want to inflict permanent damage on his measly ass!  I blame his mother.
  • His coping mechanism. Due to his recent illness I will probably let this one go but it is still worth a mention.  When The Turk comes down with man-flu his ability to operate heavy machinery or even the television remote becomes non-existent.  The world, quite rightfully, comes to an end.  Full body aching or even a simple sniffle means that he has been struck down with nothing short of Ebola.  During this period of marriage I can usually be found yelling, “Just die already” but I guess I shouldn’t do that one anymore.  I am going to need a new catch phrase.
  • His penis. The Turk loves his ding-a-ling and re-arranges said ding-a-ling at least 500 times an hour. Just leave it alone for Christ’s sake. You don’t see me touching my boobs every few seconds.
  • His penis – take two! The Turk always has sex on his mind.  All the time.  He is so freakishly obsessed with it. Will he never get bored of being horny? And why is everything related to sex?!?!  When he rang to tell me he could fly his actual words were, “The doctor said I can have sex again … oh and I can fly home as well”.  *Sigh*
  • His ability to lie. To my face.  He does it all the time.  “Darling you sing like Madonna”.  “Darling no that does not make you look enormous” or what about the “I’ll be home in 5 minutes”.  The last one is the worst.  A Turkish 5 minutes could be 5 hours, hell it could be 5 days!  Shit just ain’t true!
  • His ability to help … others. It does not matter what needs to be done The Turk is there for you.  Your neighbour’s cousin’s, aunt is moving home?  Of course The Turk will singlehandedly carry her ugly Turkish furniture down 4 flights of stairs!  A problem with your toilet?  Bob the Builder ain’t got nothing on The Turk.  A nuclear reactor in meltdown?  The Turk is all over it but God forbid if I need a light bulb changed in the stairwell!  He is AWOL.  It’s never going to happen.
  • Not only he is always right – did I mention at any stage that he is a genius – his family is also always right. His brother is always right (did you see how I highlighted that?  Can you feel the tension?).  His sister is always right.  Everyone is always right except for me.  Even if I had made the suggestion two minutes earlier it is not right unless it has been said by a family member.  Aarrghhhh!?!?

Bonus reason:

  • The inevitable reverse culture shock that will hit The Turk as soon as he sets down his suitcase. I lived through it last year, hell I blogged through it last year! He will be grumpy.  He will no doubt sulk.  He will yell it to the world, “Coming back here was a huge mistake and we should move back to Oz as soon as possible”.  This line of behaviour will carry on for a few weeks until, like a puppy, he settles into his new home albeit with a few pee puddles along the way.

He does have his good points too you know.  I don’t know what they are right now but I am sure they will come clear once he has returned home – and tidied the house.

On reflection I realise that my “10 things” would not be limited to my Turk or to Turkish men in general but wow(!) I feel like a huge weight has just been lifted off my shoulder!  Now it’s your turn.  Spill the beans people, it’s cathartic.  What annoys you about your lesser half?

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Songul’s Tepsi Kebab

December has arrived with a bang and I am pulling out my long-johns (I don’t really have long-johns) and turning up the heat here in Mersin.  The skies may be blue right now but there has been a load of snow up in the mountains behind us and enough rain to keep me indoors watching old movies and contemplating cleaning the house.

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Along with the cold weather in Mersin the menu changes to suit.  It’s starting to get too cold for a barbeque so our meat dishes need to be cooked indoors (which kind of ruins my fun).  Our garden is overflowing with Swedish chard so no doubt I will be making borek for lunch over the next few weeks.  We also have leeks, which will mean lots of soup, as well as celeriac which is another weird vegetable that I had never heard of before arriving in Mersin.  These days I serve celeriac mashed with garlic which is delicious.  Finally there is Quince everywhere so I can make my father in law’s favourite dessert and every single pomegranate tree is overflowing with ripe fruit right now so Daughter can usually be found with her cousins pilfering the fruit from the neighbour’s trees and leaving their sticky hands everywhere.  Yummo.

Last night my sister-in-law and her family came over for dinner and so I needed to prepare a dish large enough to feed 7.  Answer?  My sister-in-law’s favourite – the Tepsi Kebab or Tray Kebab.

What you need:

2 finely cut soğan (onion)

4 cloves of crushed sarımsak (garlic)

1 bunch of maydanoz (flat leaf parsley)

Cay spoon pul biber (red pepper flakes)

Cay spoon kimyon (cumin)

Tuz (salt) and karabiber (black pepper) for taste

Tereyağı (butter)

1 tbl Kırmızı biber salça (red pepper paste)

½ kilo kıyma (mince meat)

Like most Turkish recipe’s you need to get your hands dirty so mix all the ingredients really well and I mean really mix them together – your hands should be bright red along with your cheeks due to your efforts.

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Finally I press the mixture onto my kebab dish (or pizza dish or even a large oven dish) and add a couple of teaspoons of butter to keep the dish moist.  I also cut up pieces of chilli, tomato and onion for presentation.

Cooking time varies.  I prefer a low oven (say 150-160) for 30 minutes so it does not dry out.  Once it is cooked my kebab is placed on the table (in the pan) along with lavaş (flat bread) and salads.

Alright it might not look sensational but it tastes delicious!

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Afiyet olsen.

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