Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Mum, Auntie Es and I arrived back in the Bul earlier this week after our two week trip southward, with the last stop being in Pamukkale. The travertines, which form from the calcium carbonate in the spring water at the site, provide a surreal view. On approach, it appears as a mountain covered in snow, but as you come nearer and then start the climb upwards you can see water cascading down and forming these pools of a pure aqua tone.

It's mandatory to do the walk in your bare feet. Those who refuse to comply are promptly whistled at by the guard below and then chased after if they continue in obstinance (as with one couple we observed on our way down).

Today, we made the one-hour trip to my mother-in-law's place in Cerkezkoy. I must admit that I showed up here with the thought that this wouldn't feel like part of my vacation at all, that I'd constantly be pressed to translate things (since Ev couldn't come due to work), which with my level of Turkish often feels like an unpleasant chore.

And there's also, well, I guess the closest I can come to describing it is a sort of power struggle between my MIL and I, though that doesn't fully capture it. For instance, while we were on the trip, my MIL visited our apartment and decided to do some ultra-cleaning, along with her friend. This cleaning included ripping down the screens that I had painstakingly put up at the beginning of the summer to keep out the mosquitoes. The screens were deemed too dirty and were tossed into the trash. I worked at not being infuriated when I learned about this. Decided this was not something I was willing to battle over and almost let it go.

But this time, things feel different. I've been able to relax, not over-analyze things. And mostly relations have just flowed. Perhaps it's because we're on her turf and she's more comfortable too. Who knows. I just wish that things could be like this between us all the time. Tranquility. This does feel like vacation -- good times with family, yummy food and relaxation.


renai said...

It's been great reading about your vacation and great photos too! Turkey has so much to offer in terms of different holiday escapes. I agree on the MIL stuff. It's hard to deal with sometimes. It's always easier on their turf though, for me anyway, as I know she is not looking at things thinking; how untidy, how dusty, and how 'pis' everything is!!

Izmir-2-blogger said...

Mother in laws (MIL), you can't live with them and you can't live with them. Oh! I just said that didn't I? Silly me! Mother in laws are fun but you cannot stay in the vicinity of one for too long or your head would explode. Yahhhhhhhh!!


Devi said...

Thanks for reading and for your comments. At some point I think we need to throw an "I survived my Turkish MIL--so far" party and share all the hilarious and not so hilarious stories about our MILs.