1, 2, 3
my next door neighbor with a daughter had a favor,
I gave the girl a little kiss.
three dozen red Roses that Idil brought for me.
it's now Friday night and I'm finally a free man!
was waiting at the house when I got home, and boy, was I happy to see
her. I wasn't really sure why I was so happy. Was it because of all
the time we spent talking to each other on the phone, or was it the
relief of finally being done with this ordeal and knowing that she was
here to see me the same way I was there to see her, but either way I
really liked this girl. I unpacked and got myself settled in for a relaxing
night of not being in Jail or an Army Base.
next morning I was informed that we would be going out that night to
the Sultan's Palace, and was asked if I had brought any nice clothes.
(You gotta love the little
I had a whole 6 square inches of room in my suitcase for clothes, the
answer was no. So we went shopping.
I'm not the kind of person who goes crazy for clothes. I'm most comfortable
in jeans and a T-shirt, but I can dress up when needed. In Istanbul,
dressing up is a way of life. No one goes out in less than their best,
and that's fine. But I do have my own "style" of clothes that
I like, and the Turkish styles really aren't appealing to me. So shopping
that day was quite an adventure.
(She doesn't look too happy, huh? A day of shopping with Spat will do
that to you!)
and my stepmother, Gunten kept picking out clothes that I would never
wear in a million years. I like simple clothes. Solid colors, simple
patterns, nothing too crazy. But in Turkey, they like stripes. And I'm
not a fan of the stripes. It took much whining and bitching and moaning
for them to pick out solid colors for me. At one point one of the sales
people asked me why I didn't like this one striped shirt. "We wear
this shirt here at work." he told me. Great. So they want me to
wear their uniform!
came these sweaters that they wanted me to get. I'm all for sweaters,
but these were... odd. They had a zipper in the front, and because of
all my chest hair, zippers on my shirts scare me. Besides, all the sweaters
were way too tight in the arms and I just felt silly in them.
finally ditched the sweaters.
jackets they picked were super nice, and when I did finally get home,
Calvin tried to steal one. But when it came time for me to pick out
shoes, things got ugly.
had brought a nice pair of black shoes with me from NY, but they wouldn't
hear of it. They wanted me to get these Turkish shoes. Square toed Loafers.
I hate Loafers. I like laces, but I just could not get these girls to
I got Loafers.
the way home we stopped in at Melike's house for some tea. Melike is
Gunten's stepdaughter, so my stepsister I guess. And her daughter (or
my step-niece) was there as well, her name is Miray. On the way I was
warned that they also have a puppy named Jako that is very rambunctious.
is the puppy Jako!!
puppy, huh? Here's Idil and Jako playing.
dad being attacked.
a happy little puppy.
dad punching and biting Jako.
the magazine in the bottom of the second picture above? It's an Art
and Decoration Magazine. So while I'm sitting there and everyone is
playing with the dog, I looked at the house featured on the cover. It
had a nice couch. That looked just like the couch my father was sitting
on. The magazine also showed this really nice wall unit that looked
just like the one to the right of the couch. As I looked and noticed
more and more of the same features in the magazine house and this one,
it slowly dawned on me that Melike must have modeled her whole house
after the one featured in the magazine. How odd.
this was the house featured in the magazine! (You kind of knew I was
going there, but I wanted to throw you for a loop) I wonder if a magazine
will ever feature my apartment? Is there a "Condemned Monthly"
watching my dad biting Jako.
we headed home, showered, got changed and headed to the Palace.
the way, Idil and I were talking and she told me how bad she felt that
I had been taken by the Police. And while we were talking I realized
that this whole thing was basically her fault since I went to Turkey
to meet her! Not that I blame her, I just thought it was funny!
went to a place called Q-Bar. A Jazz Club in the old Palace to see a
musician named Askin Arsunan. He's apparently very famous in Europe
and has played with Janet Jackson among others (she's the only one I
remember him telling me about). Askin will also be playing in my dad's
bar in Turkbuku this summer.
My dad and Gunten.
all dressed up, got a gorgeous girl on my arm. Who could ask for more?
wearing the sparkly body lotion I got for her. Mmmm.
and Melike. Turns out that Askin is Melike's boyfriend.
I have about a million silly comments to throw in here, but I'll keep
them to myself.
he finished, Idil and I went into the back room of the club where Turkish
Delight was playing. She's apparently a famous singer/belly dancer.
loves to pose for pics. So I figured I'd do some posing of my own!
is some drunk British guy that kept trying to dance with Idil and she
kept running away until I pushed the two of them together. I'm so evil.
So she made me promise not to take any pictures. Oops. Evil again. But
I did promise I wouldn't put these two pics on the web page. Darn! Evil
this time, my dad and Gunten had gone home, so we went with Melike back
to her house. On the way were were talking about the Belly Dancer we
saw, and I reminded Idil that she had promised to Belly Dance for me
during one of our phone conversations. She claimed not to remember that....
we got to play with Jako again!
that puppy is strong!
I love that second pic. Don't know why!
I'm getting jealous!
fishnets. How deliciously evil.
think this is going to be next months cover of the SpatCave!
getting sleepy. Well, it is about 5 or 6 in the morning.
guess we woke up Miray! Sorry.
it was time to head home.
to get a shot of the back of that outfit! Still love the sparkly body
lotion. Actually, the perfume I brought her was a huge mistake! Just
one whiff of it would drive me crazy. Damn me and my good taste and
great gift giving skills!
changed for bed, and by that time is was about 7 am or so.
a long night.
can imagine we slept pretty late the next day.
we were talking on the phone from New York, Idil had told me that she
would be making reservations for us at a very romantic restaurant in
Istanbul. A place called "Kizkulesi". It's a very old Lighthouse
in the middle of the Bosphorus that you have to take a boat to. It was
featured in a James Bond film, but I can't recall which one.
story that Idil told me about the place was that the Sultan locked his
daughter in the tower there to prevent her from marrying a commoner.
But when the commoner found out she was there, he swam out, rescued
her, and they swam back to shore together. But on the way to shore they
drowned. That may be a very romantic story for a girl, but me, I would
have liked it better had they lived. But what do I know?
it is as seen from the shore.
was pouring rain the night we went, and we had to run from the boat
to the door of the restaurant to keep from getting soaked.
had a great dinner, some great wine, and really nice conversations.
She told me about when she lived in Washington DC (she actually already
has an SSN!!), about movies (The Fifth Element is her favorite), about
her work (she not only acts and dances, but she does the voice-overs
of some cartoons when they come to Turkey (how cool is that?). She really
is a great girl.
half way through dinner it finally stopped raining. It was still cold,
but at least it was dry, and we wouldn't have to make the mad dash to
are some pics taken by the cameraman in the restaurant.
were taken by us.
the view from the top of the tower. I know it's kind of dark, but that's
Istanbul out there somewhere.
shot of the tower from the ground.
a shot of one of the 2 dogs that live on the Island.
night when we got home we had a really long talk, and since she has
no intention of moving to the US (apparently she's the only girl in
all of Turkey who feels that way), and I have no intention of moving
to Turkey (except to serve my time in Turkish Army Rehab) it would be
best if we just be friends.
next day I went into Istanbul with my dad to spend some quality time
with the old man.
night I gave a call to some friends I knew from Bodrum who lived in
Istanbul and ended up going out for dinner and drinks with them.
and Didem at Angelique Bar on the European side of Istanbul. They asked
what I had been up to while in Istanbul, and I told them the basic story
you've just ready. When I told them that Idil and I had gone to Kizkulesi
for dinner the night before, they were rather freaked. I really didn't
know why until one girl finally said, "None of my boyfriends ever
took me there." I think she was jealous. Apparently it's a very
romantic place, more so than Idil let on.
talked to Idil on the phone, and she told me she had some meetings to
go to for work, so I decided to hit the town on my own Tuesday night.
father told me about a Rock and Roll club called Kemanci that used to
be hopping a few years back. He wasn't sure if it was even still open,
but I figured I'd check it out. So, into a taxi and off to a town called
got a little lost, ended up in some other bars and clubs along the way.
Ended up being attacked by a Ukrainian prostitute named Natali, didn't
know she was a prostitute at first. I just thought she was really friendly!
But sooner or later, I found Kemanci!
can't beat a club that has an old New York License plate hanging over
is Mehmet! One of the bouncers at Kemanci. He told me he'd let me in
free next time I came back, but of course, I never did go back. But
I definitely will next time I'm in town. It's really nice to hear American
Rock and Roll!!
are pics I snapped out the window of the Taxi on the way home. I noticed
at one point in the night that with Idil not around I really hadn't
taken many pics in the last 2 days!
I went out to visit Idil at her house. On the way I got a call from
my dad telling me that Alpay wanted to take me out to dinner that night.
I couldn't say no, the guy did save my life, so when I got to Idil's,
I told her I couldn't stay long.
was upset. I found out later that her and her mother had planned to
cook me a really nice dinner that night, but since no one ever tells
me anything more than 2 hours in advance, I'm never able to really make
what made it worst? She was wearing the perfume I gave her. Even though
I asked her not to wear it around me anymore.
felt horrible. Had I known? Who knows? Would I blow off Alpay for dinner
with Idil and her mother? Thankfully I didn't have to choose, she didn't
tell me about the dinner until after I left to meet Alpay.
and I went to a Kebab restaurant called Tiki. It was really nice, and
we had dinner with Alpay's brother-in-law. This guy had done the same
28 day Army tour that I was going to be doing. So I asked him what it
like being in the Army, but shorter. You run, do push-ups, shoot guns.
Army stuff. But it's a little easier because they know that most people
who go in there aren't teenagers, so they can't run them as hard as
they'd like." He told me.
it's not too bad, right?" I asked.
but it's even easier if you know how to bribe."
He explained that when he went in, he slipped some money to the Commanders
and spent his 28 days sleeping and eating. Never ran, never did anything.
And on weekends he would go to the Sheraton in Antalya and party.
night I really couldn't sleep. I don't really know why, maybe because
tomorrow would be my last day, or because of the whole Army thing, or
most likely, because of Idil. Either way, not one wink of sleep.
next day my father and I decided to head into Istanbul and do some shopping.
took the Ferry from one side of Istanbul to the other.
Mosque! Actually, it's 3 Mosques, one behind the other.
we are in Fatih at the house my father grew up in.
here is the Kiz Tashi or Girl Rock in the center of Fatih.
there we headed over to meet Mujdat Gezen at his Acting School. It's
an affiliate of the Actor's Studio in the US.
sure to check out some of my other stories from Turkey for other stories
we were there, Mujdat was interviewed 3 times. For TV, a Magazine, and
a Newspaper. Popular guy.
also spent a lot of time on the phone. I was trying to get the shot
of him with his cell phone in one ear and the regular phone in the other,
but he hung up to quick!
and Mujdat! He was very curious about the costumes I make and how I
make them. Turkey isn't exactly known for their Sci-Fi films, and I'm
sure he would love to do one!
in his office, Idil called me and asked me what I was doing that night
since it was my last night in Turkey. I told her I didn't know. My father
had told me I had plans, but never told me what. It turned out we were
going to Melike's Art Gallery Opening. I told Idil, and invited her
to come, but she said no. So we made plans to meet up after the opening.
the Gallery Opening with Askin.
me and Gunten.
Miray, me, Gunten and my dad.
maybe 10 minutes there (and while I was having some great conversations
with Ashkam, he's a really nice guy, and is almost as interesting as
I am.... almost) my dad told me to get ready to leave. Why? Because
I was going out to dinner with Miray, my Niece.
again, plans that no one tells me about.
went to a restaurant called "Ulus 29". Another incredibly
is built on 7 hills, and this restaurant was on the top of one. Out
the widows, all of Istanbul could be seen. And I'm here with my Niece.
We had a nice dinner, a few drinks, and then in the bathroom I called
Idil. Oddly enough while a guy in the next stall puked his guts up.
told her where I was and she seemed a little shocked. And when I told
her who I was with she seemed even more shocked.
told her to come by and join us for a drink and she refused. I told
her I wanted to see her on my last night, and she said I should come
by her house (on the other side of Istanbul) and see her.
told her I'd call her back.
went out and told Miray what was going on, and Miray picked up her cell
phone and called Idil. I didn't think they knew each other that well.
They talked in Turkish for a few minutes, and after a few more calls
back and forth, some small yelling (which I won't go into detail about
here) we finally convinced Idil to jump in a cab and meet us for drinks.
we got off the phone and were sure Idil was on her way, Miray and I
started talking. Miray was under the impression that maybe Idil just
wanted me to chase her more. More chasing? I chased the girl 6,000 miles!
when Idil arrived a little while later (wearing the perfume, probably
just to annoy me) we all sat around talking and having drinks. After
a while I realized that my feelings for Idil had changed. I now really
only felt friendship towards her. My romantic feelings were pretty much
gone (though the perfume wasn't helping any!). I was both happy and
saddened by this. On one hand I did really like this girl, we had a
lot in common, and I really had hoped that we could have had something
together. On the other hand, I was happy that even though we wouldn't
have the relationship, and she didn't feel for me the same way that
I felt for her, we could at least be friends. And that was a nice thing.
I was glad that we didn't ruin the friendship, and I was happy that
I could be comfortable around her without feeling... those... urges.
decided to head somewhere else, and the girls picked up their cell phones
and started calling different clubs to see which ones we could get onto
the guest lists for. Gotta love hanging out with girls in the know.
first place we hit was the "People Bar".
we are by the bar of the People Bar.
we moved over to the lounge area where the comfy chairs are.
the alcohol kicked in and the dancing started.
I didn't mind too much, because like I said, my feelings had changed.
I even noticed that I really wasn't paying as much attention to her
as I used to, but I guess that's to be expected....
what's not to be expected is Idil starting to Belly Dance for me. I
swear, I will never understand women.
it was off to Mix to see Kenan Dogulu and his band play.
we ran into some friends of the girls, Ferruh and Eray. Ferruh is a
member of the Paparazzi who has promised never to write anything bad
about Idil. Of course, I never made that promise. :)
me and Ferruh, Eray and me.
gang hanging out.
it was off to Angel Bar to see Arto sing.
he found out I was from NY, he kept coming over to talk to me. He asked
how I knew Idil, and I forget what I told him, but it was naughty.
he asked if I knew any Turkish, and I told him that Idil had taught
me some. Now remember, this is with the microphone in my face so the
whole place can hear it. So he asked me what she taught me.
(How Are You?)
Beni" (Kiss Me)
Chogu" (Son of a Bitch)
Ayip" (Shame on You)
was so embarrassed! And Arto asked why did I learn those words, so I
go up to her, say Merhaba, Naber, Op Beni, and she yells back, Orospu
Chogu, Chok Ayip! And that's how I learned it."
giving me the "Chok Ayip" look.
bottoms of the glasses are cut at an angle. Very unsettling.
singing with Arto.
again with the Belly Dancing! Women are evil.
and I with the singers.
there and heading to another bar with another lounge singer.
flamboyant lounge singer.
text messaging. Turks love to text message.
that we started heading home. Now it's about 5 am, and I need to leave
my house at 6:30 am to head to the airport. But I still haven't packed!
we head first to Idil's house (still have no idea why, I would have
thought it smarter to drop off the guy who needs to catch a plane first,
but that's just me...). We get out of the car and start walking towards
her house so I can say good-bye, and what does she do? Takes out the
bottle of perfume and spritzes herself with it! Thirty seconds later
we hug each other, and now I have the perfume all over me! When you
read a little further into the story of the next morning, you'll understand
how annoying this was.
said good-bye and I headed home to pack. Got home at 6 am, packed super
fast, and we were off to the airport.
checked in, got on line for passport control, and was taken back to
the Police Station.
Because I'm still in the computer as a Draft Dodger. Even the papers
that I have giving me permission to leave the Country didn't matter
because I'm still in the computer!
Police instruct my father as what I have to do. I now have to go to
Amasya (13 hours by bus) fill out forms at the Police Station there,
take them to the Army Base there to be approved. Then bring them back
to the Police. Then come back to Istanbul and do the same thing here.
They estimate that it should take between 3 and 5 days!
dad has to leave for his flight to Bodrum, so I check out of my flight,
get my luggage back and jump in a taxi to go to Alpay's office. Once
again, haven't slept in days. I fell asleep in the back of the taxi
and woke up at the office. Alpay went crazy again with phone calls,
and soon we were on our way to the main Police Station in Istanbul.
3 Security Check Points, we finally got in to meet with the commissioner.
We had tea and cookies and I gave him all my paperwork and they went
and checked the Computer to see what could be done.
a half hour I fell asleep again. I woke up about a half hour later to
Alpay telling me it's time to leave. They gave me back my paper work
and we headed back to the office. Once there I conked out for an hour.
woke me up, fed me, and took me back to the airport. Why? Because instead
of taking 3 days to correct all this crap, Alpay did it in under 3 hours!
He is the MAN!!!
also booked me on a later flight, and by 11 am I was finally on my way
on to the England Stories! (Finally)
1, 2, 3
you have any questions, E-Mail me. Spat@spat-nospam-cave.com