Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Progress and Language Problems

The balcony's taking shape. Mr Ayak has built the base which consists of a wall built with stone from the garden and then filled with more stone and rubble. I had my doubts yesterday as it was sloping...but today I'm more appears to be quite level after all.

It's going to be a "rustic" balcony. I can't think of another way to describe it. I don't have a digital camera so you'll be sorry to hear that I won't be able to upload a photo of it (go on..admit are sorry that I'm depriving you of a laugh aren't you?).

Some time next week the terrace will be enclosed and we will have another room. There will be metalwork surrounding the balcony and steps leading up to the new door. I can't wait!


There are lots of different dialects in Turkey, as of course there are in other countries. I recall the story about my friend from New Zealand, who has lived in Goreme for the past 20 years. She has a thriving business there and also gives demonstrations and talks all over Turkey, mostly to foreign embassy and consulate personnel. Naturally she learned her Turkish from the people of Goreme, and was quite embarrassed when after many years someone told her that her Turkish was spoken very badly. She had picked up the Goreme village dialect plus all the bad language habits...which didn't go down too well with the circles she mixed with in her trips to Ankara and Istanbul. So she decided to get a tutor and start to learn the language properly.

My Turkish is not very good at all...I am one of those people who is useless with languages. I really envy people who seem to pick up languages so easily. I get by of course, and I understand quite a lot, but I'm not good at holding a conversation. It's probably a lack of confidence as much as anything. I haven't really noticed the different dialects in the areas we have lived, other than being aware that some people speak a lot faster than others.

The people in this village speak very quickly, and for over a week I haven't actually been able to understand a word. I've just been nodding and smiling and hoping for the best. Imagine my relief when Mr Ayak informed me today that he has never come across such a strange dialect in Turkey before, and even though he is Turkish, he is finding it extremely difficult to understand them too.

I did wonder why he was also doing a lot of nodding and smiling...glad it's not just me!


  1. My tailor is from Turkey. He is a man of few words, to say the least. He doesn't speak a very good English. But he's always polite and call me "gentleman", "please", "thank you". We don't really have conversations. He seems to understand what I want. But one day, I was getting my trousers measured and he put one of his pins through my boxer shorts and it was a big pin and I couldn't get it off and I couldn't take off my trousers either as it was attached to my boxer shorts with the pin. I had to ask to him to help me taking off my trousers! You should have seen his face!

  2. What does it matter if the balcony is a bit wayward Ayak, what does it matter if the balcony is not level, it matters not, what is great is the fact that Mr Ayak is doing this, and putting his heart and soul into it, so this is not just any old balcony, this is a Mr Ayak to Mrs Ayak balcony, with love.

    Glad you got rid of the old guy, he was not going to do any work, was he, and anyway, had he done so, who knows what might have happened to him.

    Same here, some of the dialects are hard to understand until you get used to them.

    ASD, I would like to have seen that tailors face when you asked him to help you remove your trousers.

  3. Oh Ayak, I do so love to hear Mr A's adventures. The thought of the old man getting paid to watch Mr A build thebalcony gave me agiggle.

  4. ASD: What an embarrassing incident! In my opinion Turkish tailors are the best..they really take a pride in their work.

    Ann: What you say is so true. It wouldn't really matter to me how the balcony turned out. It's the thought behind it..and as it happens it's really not bad at all!

    Hi Karen: Quite...and the fact that unless I had intervened Mr Ayak would have carried on letting the old man watch...and then paid him the full amount no doubt!

  5. "Turkish tailors are the best..they really take a pride in their work". Hear hear!! I second to that, Ayak!!!


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