Those of you who are long time readers of my little blog may recall my post about Carl Frederiksen. He was one of the old gentlemen that I would often meet in the village. He was a kind old fella who unfortunately could not speak but he was always smiling and always so generous.
I hadn’t seen Carl for a little while, in fact I wondered if he had moved away.
This morning while yelling at Daughter to “hurry the hell up or you’ll be late for school” I saw an ambulance drive past. Now I’m not proud but I rolled my eyes – another funeral. Five minutes later the mosque made the announcement – it was Carl.
Tears filled my eyes. He was near to 90 years old – so he had had a good wicket – but he was one of the most genuine people I had ever met. I wondered what would happen to him as he had no family but when The Turk and I arrived at his home I was so happy to see that there were hundreds of people there to see him off. His neighbours washed his body and shrouded him while the village men carried flowers and followed in procession to the mezarlık (cemetery) for him to be buried. Early tomorrow I will make the trip with the ladies to the mezarlık for the prayer.
I was so proud to be a part of this village today. Whether you are young or old, with a family or very much alone, no one is left behind.
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What a nice tribute. I think he’d have liked it.
Another Time……Another Place!
Delightful story. thanks for writing about this. Stories such as these are heartwarming. I clicked through to find out why a “Scandinavian” man without a tongue was living in a Turkish village. Turkey certainly leaves Western countries way behind in its inclusive and respectful treatment of seniors.
It really does. I just returned from the cemetery (women go on a different day to mourn) and his grave was covered with hundreds of flowers. It was very special.
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I’m sorry for your loss and the community’s loss.
This beats hands down anything that us supposedly more advanced Europeans do for our old and lonely, which is jack shit. Well done Mersin, well done Turkey!
Yes when I think about the stories you read about in the paper about elderly people who had died weeks or months before back in Sydney or elsewhere. That just wouldnt happen here.
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Well done your village. Thanks for writing about it.
A week or so ago I met the my friend’s grandparents in southern Brazil, her 89 and him 95. They live with their daughter (my friend’s mum). Although we didn’t share a common language (except via translation) one could see the love in their eyes.
The previous Sunday my friend cooked “churrasco” (Brazilian BBQ). I was amazed when he told me up until last year his grandfather still cooked churrasco.