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Friday, 26 October 2012

The wrong day

How could I have got the date wrong?  For some reason I had it firmly fixed in my head that Kurban Bayram started on Friday.  I could have checked my diary of course, because it clearly stated that it started on Thursday.

On Wednesday Mr A decided to go down to the land in the village and pick the rest of the pomegranates, as someone had offered to buy them.  While he was there he had a phone call from Ankara to say that his grandfather had passed away.

As you may be aware, funerals here take place the day after death, and it's customary for every member of the family to make the effort to get there, no matter how far away they live.  The fastest way for Mr A to get to Ankara would be to fly.  Unfortunately there were no seats available on flights leaving on Wednesday, the earliest being Thursday.  So he would have to drive there...the most expensive alternative with the high cost of petrol here.  It would take him 10 hours, but at least he would arrive in time for the funeral.

I emptied my purse, except for some loose change, and Mr A withdrew what he needed from the ATM and off he set.

Yesterday ( Thursday), still thinking I had time to do shopping before the start of Bayram, I went down to the village to catch the bus at 9.00am.  I started to have doubts when I saw hoards of men coming out of the mosque.  They are not very religious in this village.  The only time they attend mosque en masse is at the start of a religious festival.  Amongst them was one of the bus drivers, who saw me waiting at the bus stop.  He informed me that there were no buses today as it was Kurban Bayram...and in any case even if I went into Milas, the shops would probably be closed.

With the loose change I popped into the village shop and bought some bread and then returned home.  OK I have enough food to last until Mr A returns...but I am a smoker (I know...filthy habit) but at this point in time I knew I wasn't going to last for several days with half a packet of cigarettes.

Mr A phoned and informed me that because of Bayram the funeral has been delayed until today (Friday).  No doubt he will then stay on for the rest of the holiday with his family.

I explained how I had got the date wrong and was now unable to get into Milas until he returned.  He told me to go to the village shop and ask for cigarettes and tell the man I would pay later.  I know this is common practise...everyone does it...but I can't.  I find it too embarrassing.  I'd rather go without.

 So he phoned the shop and has asked the man to give some cigarettes to our neighbour Mehmet who brings my post, and tell him to drop them off to me when he passes by, which he duly did last night.   Aren't people lovely?

Another reason for not actually wanting to set foot outside the house on the first day of Kurban Bayram, is that I can't face witnessing the slaughter of sheep.  After so many years I accept it, even though I don't like it, but I prefer to shut myself in the house until it's over.  I'm relieved that I had set off for the 9.00am bus before it started.  If I'd left it until later I doubt I would have been able to avoid it.

Moral of this story  (note to self)...always check your diary.

Kurban Bayraminiz Kutlu Olsun.

16 comments:

  1. Oh dear, Ayak, absolutely the wrong day! Hope things improve from now on - but maybe it could have been a jolly good time to kick the habit?
    I agree about checking diaries - I have been known to get things wrong myself. After two months off work several years ago (gall bladder and its removal!) I triumphantly returned full of enthusiasm...on a Bank Holiday...I felt very stupid.
    Axxx

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    1. Yes that must have been embarrassing Annie! I did actually think that if Mehmet forgot to bring the cigarettes I would make the effort to quit..but he remembered..so quitting will have to wait for another time.

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  2. I too was think 'time to quit' it was a sign. Imagine the money you would save. I put my last pack in a drawer and left them there incase of emergencies. Perhaps you could do the same with yours. So far knowing that each 'emergency' is probably not the worst I will ever face I'm still hanging onto my last cigarette :)

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    1. I'm giving it serious consideration KV. I have quit several times before..sometimes for considerable lengths of time (the longest 9 years!). When I do, I just wake up one day and decide. It has to be the right time for me and when it is, as on previous occasions, I do it fairly easily with no support or props. If I pick the wrong time, it doesn't work. I have to be in the right frame of mind.

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  3. Mr Fly can quit...just like that.... and the last has been for over a year....but it has to be the right moment, so I know what you mean.

    He had been off the ciggies for years when his sister came to visit...she had to go to town every day to buy 40 which she would smoke in one day (wouldn't buy more per day or she would have smoked them)and that set him off again, though to be fair it was on the mini cigars they sell here, made from the leaves rejected by the cigar factory.

    He stopped and hasn't started again and as we're unlikely to have another visit........

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    1. My willpower is good when I'm in the right frame of mind Fly. I imagine this is how it is for Mr Fly. It doesn't help that Mr A smokes. When I have quit before, it's been when he's away, which is a lot easier.

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  4. You could go on the pomegranate diet - Discover they take away the cravings for cigarettes - write a book - open a franchise and then Mr A could stay at home and plant ever more pomegranate trees. (can I do your PR ?)

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    1. Yes of course you can do my PR BtoB...you make it sound so easy!

      I don't much like pomegranates. The eczane in Milas advised me that the juice would be good for my IBS.I didnt fancy treking down to the land, picking them and attempting to extract the juice without a juicer so I actually bought a carton of pure juice..it was almost 6 lira! One mouthful and I felt sick. Thankfully it kept ok in the fridge till Mr A returned and he drank it.

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  5. Hi Ayak

    I am one of Perpetua's four sisters. My husband and I have recently returned from our first trip to Turkey. Loved the country & the people were friendly and interested in talking about our lives in England and theirs in Turkey. Lots of parties of friendly, polite school children around in Istanbul & on the Gallipoli peninsula. Keen to try out their smatterings of English.

    Did the usual tourist tour down the west coast after a couple of days in Istanbul (far too brief a visit) then Gallipoli, Troy, Pergamon & Ephesus then a relaxing couple of days on the coast enjoying the sunshine and warm sea.A tantalizing brief visit to a small part only of the country.

    As you say Pomegranate juice is an acquired taste but I may need it's slimming qualities after so much delicious Turkish food.

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    1. Hello PolkaDot and a warm welcome to my blog. Perpetua did mention recently that you were coming to Turkey. It sounds like you managed to pack a great deal into your trip, and I'm glad you enjoyed the warm hospitality of the Turkish people. Yes schoolchildren are very polite here aren't they? They constantly shout over the wall of the school when I pass..lots of them calling out"hello what is your name?". It seems to be the first thing they learn.

      I hope your trip has made you want to visit again. There is so much more to see.

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  6. Despite agreeing with everyone who has said this was a sign to give up, I'm pleased for you that some emergency supplies were delivered. I'm sure you need to choose the moment, and having one forced on you would not be good. I'm also glad you haven't seen any garden sacrifices today ! J.

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    1. You hit the nail on the head there Janice. It has to be the right time for me to quit. If I feel pressure to do so from any direction, I just dig my heels in and refuse!

      And yes am relieved not to have seen the sacrifices!

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  7. Turkish people do seem to be very kind.
    I suppose the time has got to be right to give up smoking and you cannot do it just for convenience.
    Maggie X

    Nuts in May

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    1. They are very kind on the whole Maggie. I think most of the people in the village have credit at the shop at some time or another, but I find it difficult. I just don't like owing money. I'd rather go without. Although on this occasion I was very grateful to have a supply of cigarettes...it;s just not the right time for me to stop.

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  8. As another ex-smoker I know from experience that you have to want to give up or it won't happen, Ayak, or at least won't last. I'm sure it will happen again some day, but this was obviously not the right time. It does seem that Turkish people are very kind and helpful, though like you, I would rather go without than ask for something on tick.

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    1. I'm sure there will be another right time Perpetua. I think our generation were brought up to not owe money. I would rather go without than ask x

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