Hello again from Turkey,
Last night Antalya saw a downpour of unexpected rain accompanied by even less-expected thunder and lightening. Apparently anything other than sunshine and heat is unheard of in August. We had been hoping all summer to see rain in Antalya, and when it finally did, we felt right at home.
We are in our last few days in Turkey and we’re anxious to get home, but still trying to fully enjoy the short time we have left here. Friday was our last day working at the Kres’. It was a sad goodbye to say the least. At the end of the day the kids had a special goodbye planned for us. They gave us the traditional Turkish goodbye [a kiss on each cheek], and they each gave us a little turtle with their name written on the bottom to remember them by. In Antalya, turtles symbolize new birth and opportunity—significant because we had been working with young children. Since the beginning of the summer we knew that saying goodbye to the kids would be hard, and it lived up to our expectation. After lots of hugs and kisses we finally said goodbye.
This weekend Tans’ule, the owner of the kres’ invited us over for a traditional Turkish dinner, which we were able to help prepare—it was delicious. It was really fun to sit, talk, and listen to many of her stories. It was particularly special because Tans’ule has been very busy this summer, and we did not have many opportunities to spend quality time with her. At dinner, we were able to see the real heart she has for all the kids we have been working with, and it was interesting to hear more about each child and their family, because with the language barrier all summer, we only knew them by their smiles and personalities.
These last few days are filled with packing, finishing up a few errands [picking up the lat-minute mementos we want to have to remember Turkey, and visiting our favorites spots one last time—which of course includes the beach], and saying goodbye to the many people we’ve met here.
We leave for Istanbul on Thursday, where we get to spend a day and a half site-seeing, and then on Saturday we will return home. Please pray for safe travel. We can’t wait to see you all!
See you soon,