Sunday, January 10, 2016

Christmas Eve in Istanbul

In Turkey, there is no Christmas holiday break. They take off New Year's Day of course and usually they'll give you a half day the day before, but no Christmas. But, in the school I work at, and most other private Turkish K-12 schools that employ native English speakers, they give Christmas day off for the foreign hires regardless of their religion. Sadly, all my Turkish colleagues had to cover my classes that day.
I just want to write about this great thing that happened to our family, but apparently I can't because my husband can't let me have just 30  minutes of uninterrupted alone time. WARNING: Venting Alert! Venting Alert!: My life at work is stressful almost the whole time I'm there. When I come home, I spend my time in the kitchen cooking, which I love, and then I spend time with the kids cuz by that time he's exhausted with them and I haven't really seen them all day. Then after they're in bed, I look forward to relaxing but I don't even know why I think I can do that because I still have my husband to entertain. Gosh! How could I think of even sitting down to relax while he's still awake?  Oh, I forgot to mention, I go to the gym every day for an hour at least. At first I thought I went there to stay fit, but now I realize its just to get some "me" time, ALONE, and since they don't have public libraries here, the gym is the next best place. I know I sound like a total b+%#h and I actually am one at times, but I'm over the phase in my life where I only post 'appropriate' things on my blog that reflect a state of continual happiness in myself, my husband and my children. Venting Terminated! Venting Terminated!
Now I'll continue with what I was going to write about before I started feeling guilty about ignoring my husband. Don't worry, I'll go spend time with him after I finish writing this. And no, our marriage is not on the rocks!
On Christmas Eve I went home after work feeling really excited about not having to go to work the next day and getting to spend time with my family. I was looking forward to watching some Christmas movies that I like. Ones that always make me laugh like A Christmas Story and The Elf and even It's a Wonderful Life. So, I get home, we eat dinner, Hector is still discussing the difficulty that Santa is going to encounter getting down our invisible chimney. After dinner clean-up I'm puttering around the house wrapping presents in my room and doing some food preparation for the next day while the kids watch a show and the doorbell buzzer goes off and I hear Jonathan talking to someone. We never get unannounced visitors here so I'm wondering who it is. Of course they're speaking in Turkish so I can't get most of it. Jonathan calls me to the door and asks me if I know anything about these bags of groceries that this guy is delivering to us.??? No. So we take the grocery bags but then the guy keeps coming back with more and more of them. They're filled with all kinds of food and some toys and I'm trying to understand what's going on. Then I realize that someone really nice has bought us groceries as an act of Christmas kindness. Even now as I write this I'm more touched by the gesture than the immensity of the gift even though the quantity of grocery bags we received covered our entire kitchen floor. I couldn't even walk across the kitchen floor (I even tried but I smashed a chocolate pudding in the process). We showed the kids and they were amazed that someone would do this, but then they went back to finish watching their show. Helen wanted to help me put everything away.
I love this memory, and I know its only a few weeks old but I still love to think about it. I love the Christmas season because it does bring out a little extra kindness in people. And I have some suspicions about who might have done this for us, but I can't be sure. Just know, whoever you are, that we are still enjoying the food and will be for some time into the future, but we'll enjoy the memory foreverrrrrrrrrrrr!
Now I'll go spend time with dear Mr. 

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