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We will send regular newsletters to our members who have signed up for receiving it during the registration. In 'mymerhaba' newsletter, our editorial staff provides updates, with regard to any information related to places worth visiting, viewing, or otherwise worth knowing, for those who care to know more....

Moores' Anniversary Weekend

Fred and Carol
 Untitled Document

By Fred Moore - December 2005

Let me begin today with a description of our anniversary weekend. The program manager for the contractor that has the contract I'm here to oversee has a Christmas Party each year on or about Carol and my anniversary weekend; we enjoy a very lovely stay at the Seyhan Hotel down town (at our own expense) where the party is held. Last year we stayed but one night, this year we decided for two nights.

We drove down Friday afternoon about 4 pm and had the car tucked away in the hotel garage. We settled into our 'non-smoking' room and put our things away. We weren't taken to our room and upon entering had a bit of a challenge; seems we had no power. My fault, I had not been in a hotel where the plastic slot key was required for lighting as well as entry. There's a slotted switch tray about two and half inches square on the wall just inside the door; the room key MUST be inserted in the slot OR you get no power! Saves a lot of energy, I suppose.

As we enter the room, to our right, built into the wall are the closets. There are two with sliding doors; they're not real deep but quite functional. Next is a built in unit with a small refrigerator (mini-bar) filled with a number of sodas, alcohol, water, beer, snacks, and other bar items. Still on the right as we continue, there's a padded bench then a cabinet with the TV atop it. Next is the desk and chair unit with a large mirror the full length abutting it. It appears all of this to our right could easily be one continuous wall unit from the door to the end of the desk; all of it maintains similar color and design.

On our left as we enter the room corridor we have the bathroom. It's large and has a very adequate vanity space on both sides of the sink. I would guess it must be eight feet from the door to the back wall of the room with the sink in the center; it's marble. The water is automatic, put hand or glass under it and there you have water. The bathroom is well appointed with even the addition of a small face mirror that you can bring out from the wall toward your face. There is power for both 110/220.

About five paces into the room the corridor ends and on the left are two double size beds. There's a bed stand for each. Toward the back of the room are two very tasteful overstuffed chairs and a pedestal table between them. The table isn't very practical really, because of its height. Behind the table and chairs are the double drapes stretching the full length of the back of the room. The drapes are heavy velvet to the inside and a cream sheer underneath toward the window. The window is centered on the wall behind the drapes; the view is a cityscape in the immediate foreground and snow capped mountains on the horizon. We're high enough that the view is quite lovely, but still a bit obstructed by the buildings around us.

We decide to simply relax a bit and see what's offered up on the local TV. We discover four channels in English: BBC Prime, BBC World, CNN and CNBC. As you can see it's mostly news outlets but one can never get too much news - HeeHee. BBC Prime is some programming but nothing we found of much interest; at least not in this time slot. In times past in other hotels, BBC Prime is great programming.

We decide to get out and walk around the city streets in this neighborhood; we know this area to some degree but walk streets we're not all that familiar with. Since it's December the sun has set and we walk in the illumination of buildings around us or none at all. Most of the streets have streetlights however many are simply no good for one reason or another. It has rained a little over the last several days so we try as best we can to avoid the standing water and mud. Even with paved streets and brick walks things get muddy and slick from the dust and dirt here. We make about a ten-block circle to the north of our hotel and enjoy the adventure. I know I've written of the obstacles on sidewalk and streets here, but after a rain these things get even more challenging. Two thirds of the way through our walk we stop at a little kabob 'Gokceli' place we've eaten at a number of times in the past; the food is always good and we eat quite cheaply.

On our leisurely stroll back to our hotel it begins to rain gently but persistently and we get a little damp. We dodge cars on the street as we walk and I try to walk as closely to a building as I can to avoid the most rain, but again that's a problem with all the people who park on the sidewalk. We're far from the only folks out this evening though and like others pay little attention to the inconvenience. Rather than dawdle though, we get straight back to the hotel on the shortest route we know.

We settle in with the TV and watch the BBC and CNN news; they vertically go over the same ground! It never ceases to amaze me how our planet seems to continue to shrink. We've gone from knowing little of our global neighbors to knowing how the villagers live and how tragedy strikes in Outer Mongolia, but we still don't know who lives next door! We easily tire of the offerings of modern technology however and simply decide to retire for the evening.

The courtesy notice left on our bedside by the room custodian suggests today is supposed to be more rain but the horizon I see looks clear and very inviting. Breakfast is included in our room rate and it's advertised from 6 - 10, we freshen up and make our way down to the dinning room. This hotel has a breakfast we remember from last year as nothing short of awesome; we have eight or ten kinds of bread laid out before us as we enter the serving area. The center island is adorned with plates of vegetables & meats, bowls of preserves, bowls of olives and fruit. There are a number of stainless steel covered warmers around the room with eggs (both boiled and scrambled), meats (even bacon) and fried potatoes. There's a young lady in one corner serving up omelets of your choice. Carol has one and pronounces it great. There's coffee, tea, juices and water. Anyone unable to satisfy a palette here has to be DEAD!

We spend at least an hour here being served and serving ourselves; the food is great and more than plentiful if I didn't make that clear above; we savor every bit of it, even to the point of making more than one trip. As we enjoy our leisurely breakfast we talk of what we'll do with our day. One thing we want to do for sure is find a pedestal lamp for our bedroom at home; the winter months simply make the room far too dark in the morning. It's really lovely outside so we leave the hotel and cross the main street out front. We're headed into old Adana and I know from past walks the lighting places are directly across the street and not far into the old part of town. The temperature must be around sixty and the air is fresh and clean from all the rain last night. It's Saturday morning and the commerce around us as we melt into the old city is bustling. Both shop keepers and street vendors are out and the cacophony is musical. This, 'heart of the unknown', intimidates a number of people we know on the base but I find it fascinating and I'm drawn into it without fear.

We don't get but maybe three blocks into the old city and there are stores of light fixtures and lamps on both sides of the street. We stop to study the window contents of several stores on our side of the street and pass several by; we pop into the first one that gives us an idea they may have lamps. Carol has noticed the second floor of one shop with a number of floor lamps sitting in the window and we decide we need to take a look.

We enter the store and see the staircase in the rear; we make our way to the back of the store on the left to ascend the stairs. As we mount the first step a young lady follows us up to the second floor. We review the lamps Carol noticed from the street and even look at a multitude of fixtures hanging from the ceiling; we're not interested in fixtures but they're still very fascinating. Carol is drawn to several; one an airplane, then a helicopter, then a bug or was it a butterfly; there are simply too many to remember. The pedestals on the floor models are far too large in my view and I decide we need to search out other models, besides we have nothing else to do today. Once out on the street again we decide to cross over to the other side because we see other places that appear more prone to have what we want. We're in and out of a couple more stores but in short order find just what we think will do the job for us. We get a small goose neck desk lamp that is adjustable, its neck is flexible to the point that I can turn the head completely upright so that it shoots straight up at the ceiling; this will become an indirect lighting source shooting light off the ceiling. It's 220 power as everything here is and that too is what we need. We pay the gentleman his 12 TL, something a little less than $9 and leave the store with our lamp.

That was all we had seriously planned for our day so we simply stroll the streets now not in search of anything, simply enjoying each other's company and people watching. We happen onto a little alley we've visited on a number of occasions before, filled with many shops of department store type goods. Carol stops us at the first shop on the corner filled with shoes and purses; a purse has caught her eye that might be good for our granddaughter. As is her nature Carol was not taken with what she saw to begin with but found a number of other things to inspect; we left with a very lovely little clutch-size purse covered in beads of many shapes; I thought it was a little heavy but it's very pretty and can be a handbag or a shoulder bag with the chain shoulder strap.

We wondered down this little alley and stopped here and there looking at nothing in particular and everything generally. Carol has purchased sewing notions in one of the little shops here in the past. We turned the corner out of the alley and strolled past a good number of gold shops and clothing stores. We're always taken with the window displays; the creativity here even in old Adana store windows is beautiful. A classic example: male mannequins standing in suits both with ties and with open collar shirts with what appears to be fresh fallen snow on them. There are female mannequins tastefully dressed in the same window, again in dark suits with the fallen snow, one with her blazer just slightly too parted so one can get a glimpse of her bright red bra! This window isn't designed to appeal to the Moslem conservative. This window is also NOT the exception; many windows are provocative but well designed in every way. We dash into an entryway, a mall of sorts and find our way through it to more gold shops. We walked up first this street then that one going nowhere really. After several hours wandering into one shop after another we have made a large circle and begin heading back to the hotel.

Back in the room we decided to see if we can get anything but news on the TV; we find some comedy on the BBC Prime station and wasted several hours in front of the tube. Around two o'clock we think lunch would be a good idea since dinner is going to be very late. (Remember; we're here to attend a Christmas Party). We leave the hotel again and this time walked some of the same areas we walked last night. A few blocks from the hotel we find a very nice cafeteria and stop for lunch. This is a very lovely little place with table clothes and chairs all covered in a gold fabric. We're welcomed and introduced to the many items available on the serving counter; we both have soup and a side of vegetables with a main dish. I was a little put off by the cost as I'm not accustomed to paying $20 for lunch here; the food is good though and the portions adequate but certainly nothing to justify the cost. I would certainly return but NOT on a regular basis; there are plenty of really great places to eat that are far cheaper. Atmosphere is always nice but lunch is not what I do for ambiance!

After wandering around some more doing little or nothing, the sky begins to overcast and we decide to make our way back to the hotel. Carol wants to get her dress pressed for the party and we asked as we were leaving the hotel for them to get her an iron and ironing board for our room. When we get back into our room there's nothing to do the pressing so Carol phones and finds they will send someone right up, she hardly drops the phone when the doorbell rings. There's a young man with the laundry service that wants to take the garment to press it; he's gone no more than twenty minutes; the dress is back and looks great and Carol didn't have to do anything.

Cocktails aren't until seven so we settle once more on some TV. The combination of rain and the late afternoon have the sky outside looking pretty uninviting; I think of some of the folks from the office who will attend the party and decide to call them about the highway into the city. You see, yesterday on our way to the hotel, we had to detour around a major intersection of construction; I wanted those who were driving to know about the detour. The rain began to pelt the window and before long was so hard I couldn't see the buildings across the street from us. This is the time of year for rain though; we need it; the last several months should have been rainy but haven't been. We really need all we can get because during the summer months we get almost none.

The time has escaped and we must be getting dressed for the cocktail party, a little too warm in this room but I figure it will be even warmer at the party later, so we press on. We get our party cloths on and get down the hall to the elevator; the hotel has placed a tasteful sticker on the side of the correct button; I press it and down we go. We've dragged around some so when we get to the party it's in full swing and our appearance goes unnoticed to some degree. As is usual, there are coveys of people everywhere. We get intercepted almost immediately inside the door by people we both work with and then we get totally consumed by other participants who are drifting through the room. Waiters are numerous and their trays well festooned with all things fluid; Carol and I both go for the white wine. Oh, I'm impressed, this is a very nice one and I inquire to its origin; it's Terra, seems it's from Ankara and I've never heard of it. It's a new line of wine, well chilled, slightly dry and very pleasing to the tongue. We had a favorite 'Kavaklidere, Cankaya' when we lived in Ankara and it's available here too, but right now this is very nice.

Someone else stops Carol about every third set and we get engrossed in a number of conversations almost simultaneously. With few exceptions I know most of those present, and those I don't know, Carol seems to know so we've got the placed covered. There are standing tables scattered around the room with chips and nuts liberally distributed. There are about as many military & government employee as there are contractor employees and since we all work very closely together most everyone knows everyone else. In no time the call to dinner comes and everyone make their way to the elevators for the ride to the penthouse dinning room. We all spend some time waiting in the hallway and go about six at a time to the penthouse. As we step out of the elevator we're directed to the door of the dinning room. The lady at the door tells us were sitting at table five next to the window as she points out our direction of travel. There must be twenty round tables set for five couples each; we find our place cards and put down our things.

It's extremely black out of doors now and the rain is still falling very hard; the windows tilt inward so they exaggerate the sound of the rain. The city's very large (new) mosque is immediately across the void in front of us as we sit looking out the window. To our right in the same view is the Hilton Hotel; the mosque and the hotel share opposite banks of the river. We're waiting for the masses to ascend and enjoying more social interaction with those who will be joining us at our table. Our table is light two people because one couple couldn't make it but as we look around the room few chairs are empty. This is one of those occasions you long to be a part of.

Our host for the evening collects the microphone from the bandstand and makes the perfunctory introductions; the American Consulate General & his wife are in attendance, several of the Base's Commanders are here along with other less notable base leadership personnel. With those protocol issues complete, our first of six courses is served. Throughout that series of courses our water and wineglasses never went dry.

We begin with a mixed plate of cold hors d'oeuvres, then hot hors d'oeuvres followed by salad. We were offered two different main dishes with our reservation and I ordered the lamb while Carol ordered the chicken. They were both very good. Two mixed fruit platters followed the main entree for the table and then individual plates well adorned with ice cream and cake followed everything else! All of these things over a three hour period!! Can I tell you how we could spend a more rewarding anniversary eve, NO; I definitely cannot!

All the time the band played assorted music; mostly of 'our' generation and between courses many folks danced. Carol and I managed a dance or two as well; the dance floor was fairly small and never lacked for use. Finally at eleven thirty after a number of folks had slipped away, we too made our escape, leaving only a handful of partiers on the dance floor.

At eight thirty we once again made our way to the breakfast buffet. We met our very good friends Mike and Laura for coffee, conversation and good food. This morning simply topped off our wonderful anniversary weekend.




Fred´s Farewell
A Day Trip in January
Drive to Roman Ruins
An Autumn Drive
Cappadocia - Once Again
A Trip to Ephesus and Pamukkale
Fred´s Tarsus
Northern Cyprus Over Thanksgiving
Cilician Drive
Kocatepe Mosque - Ankara
A Visit to Anıtkabir
Fred´s Weekend in Ankara
A Day in Anavarza
Driving in the Heartland
Spontaneity by Fred
A Trip to Soğanlı and Gülşehir
An Antakya Weekend
A Weekend Around Adana
A Rainsoaked Adventure
A Mediterranean Adventure
Fred's Bor Adventure
Fred's Weekend Escape to Ihlara
Fred's Lecture on Carpet
Fred's Weekend Away
Uzuncaburc with Fred
Museums of Cappadocia
Göreme - A Different Way
Night Train to Ankara
Cave Home Tour
A Trip to Kayseri - Özkonak
Kastabala in August
A Bittersweet Adventure
Silifke, Anamur and more
Around Adana
Catalhoyuk & Aksehir Adventures
Nigde Exploration
Cappadocia Again
Kahramanmaraş Again
A Trip to Kayseri - Sultanhani
A Morning Walk
Sunday Lunch Overlooking the Lake
Fred's Kahramanmaras
Holiday Drive to Mersin
A Sunday Drive to Yumurtalik
Fred's Tarsus
Fred's Cappadocia
Botas Seaside Drive
Fred's Konya Museums
A Bus Tour to Antakya
A Walk with Cuddle
Ankara Again
Gaziantep Museum by Fred
Moores' Anniversary Weekend
Shopping in Sanliurfa
The Seaside at Karataş
This is Ankara
Tour to Gaziantep-Harran
Trip to Konya
Birsen's Horizons
Fred's Trip Logs
Bahar's Views on...
Business World
From Members' Pen
Interviews with Members
Moms & Kids Corner
Pets with Dr. Demirel
The archives of The Guide
The Archives of Turkishtime
Teen's world

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Fred's Trip Logs
Fred´s Farewell
A Day Trip in January
Drive to Roman Ruins
An Autumn Drive
Cappadocia - Once Again
A Trip to Ephesus and Pamukkale
Fred´s Tarsus
Northern Cyprus Over Thanksgiving
Cilician Drive
Kocatepe Mosque - Ankara
A Visit to Anıtkabir
Fred´s Weekend in Ankara
A Day in Anavarza
Driving in the Heartland
Spontaneity by Fred
A Trip to Soğanlı and Gülşehir
An Antakya Weekend
A Weekend Around Adana
A Rainsoaked Adventure
A Mediterranean Adventure
Fred's Bor Adventure
Fred's Weekend Escape to Ihlara
Fred's Lecture on Carpet
Fred's Weekend Away
Uzuncaburc with Fred
Museums of Cappadocia
Göreme - A Different Way
Night Train to Ankara
Cave Home Tour
A Trip to Kayseri - Özkonak
Kastabala in August
A Bittersweet Adventure
Silifke, Anamur and more
Around Adana
Catalhoyuk & Aksehir Adventures
Nigde Exploration
Cappadocia Again
Kahramanmaraş Again
A Trip to Kayseri - Sultanhani
A Morning Walk
Sunday Lunch Overlooking the Lake
Fred's Kahramanmaras
Holiday Drive to Mersin
A Sunday Drive to Yumurtalik
Fred's Tarsus
Fred's Cappadocia
Botas Seaside Drive
Fred's Konya Museums
A Bus Tour to Antakya
A Walk with Cuddle
Ankara Again
Gaziantep Museum by Fred
Moores' Anniversary Weekend
Shopping in Sanliurfa
The Seaside at Karataş
This is Ankara
Tour to Gaziantep-Harran
Trip to Konya

Focus On
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Fred's Trip Logs
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