Okay, so as soon as we get our computer back together, the internet goes down! (Yep, the whole world wide web - just up and died - thousands in shock- anarchy in the streets, the whole bit) OKAY! So I meant that OUR internet was down. But that is irrelevant, because now we are back on. After missing a few slightly important things like due dates for bills and Grandma Ada's 90th birthday gift. Grrrrr.....
I know it sounds trite, but there HAS been a lot going on. I actually drove for the first time off base and into the city. (Got terribly lost, paid a toll on the Turkish Otoban, asked a donkey cart driver for directions, smiled politely and nodded when I didn't understand a bit of what he said - you know - the usual) Oh - and a man was electrocuted on our front lawn. Don't worry though, he's doing better now.
So, let me start at the beginning. Last Thursday, I woke up and rushed around my house to get everything ready for the "Planned Power Outage"at 8am. Contractors were fixing a transformer in front of our house, so our whole block lost power that day. My friend Angie and I had decided to go into Adana rather than be stuck at home with no power. She showed up just as the power went out. We went to get into the car when all of the sudden we heard a loud popping/banging noise and a man was on the ground in front of the transformer with smoke coming out of the top of his head. Then everyone went nuts. (By the way - Turkish people are NOT calm in a crisis.) It took us forever to call for help, because of the aforementioned "power outage" no one's electric phones were working. (Note to self - get a corded phone)
At this point everyone is in panic mode. It seemed like every Turkish handyman on the base (there are A LOT) was running to try and help. Many of the Turkish nannys (there are even MORE) were crying. My neighbor's nanny just wrung her hands and kept yelling, "cok gec" (chalk gech - "it is too late") The lady next to her turned pale until I pointed out that the man was moving his hands and nodding his head.
The ambulanz finally arrived and he was whisked away. All of us were still pretty shook up, but we had to leave in order to make it back in time to get our kids from school. Besides, there was nothing else we could do at this point. So on we venture. (a sane person would have noticed that this experience did not bode well for the rest of the day, but since when am I sane?)
So, we leave the safety of our little base and venture out into the great wide world. Now I was trying to find the office of my Turkish friend, Delik. She had offered to take me to get a cell phone. Mostly because the prices on the base are more expensive. Anyway, I spent about 30 minutes doing what should have take 5. (I tell you, these roads are made by blind-folded, drunk donkeys!) When we finally found her office, I go to get her - and she sends out her Boss instead. Apparently she wasn't able to get away. I had met him a couple of times, so I felt only a little weird having him help. I probably would have said "no thanks" but we REALLY needed an interpreter.
So he takes me to the cell phone store, and again I feel as though I am 6 years old. I am standing there feeling stupid while they talk over my head. I basically have to trust that this man, Sefer, is actually buying me a cell phone and not selling me into slavery.
All goes well, and I am feeling confident enough to drop Sefer off before the I head over to the bazzar. He keeps asking, "you are sure you know the way?" "Of course" Angie says, "It is a straight shot right?" (By the way - this is the same Angie that accompanied me on my infamous "dolmus" trip. Something else a sane person would have noticed)
As I am sure you have guessed by now, we became lost. Very, very lost. Suffice it to say, asking for directions around here is like playing a twisted game of charades. Luckily for me, Sefer had programmed his cell phone number into my phone. We called him and he talked us back to the main roads. Thank heaven for bilingual friends. All these close shaves have made me study my Turkish even harder.
It is funny how being safe at home makes these stories funny.....
Next week Michael returns to Pennsylvania to take his National Board Exam. I might not get much written while he is gone, but I will try to post some pictures. Oh, and the man that was electrocuted really is okay. He had some pretty severe burns, but it could have been SO much worse! Here's to the next adventure! Gorusuruz!