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Published: October 22nd 2017
View of the wedding reception from our room
This was kind of a tough picture to get, but it should give you some idea of the scope of this thing. They launched the fireworks from back in the green area and all of the flowers brought or sent by guests were off to the left. The bride and groom were just on the far side of the pool in big white chairs.
Geo: 39.935, 32.847
It's midnight on our last night in Turkey. It literally ended with a bang. We booked a room in the Allstar Esenboga Airport hotel so that we could be close by for our 6am flight home. Little did we know that there was a wedding also booked at the hotel that involved, conservatively 750 guests and two fireworks displays. We were able to watch most the lavish spectacle from our 6th floor balcony. If you ever get married in Turkey, from what we were able to discern, you just have to speak a simple, "Evet" and sign something and the deed is done. Whether you serve dinner to close to a thousand of your nearest and dearest, hire two bands (one traditional strolling band and a more modern on) and party on 'til the wee hours is strictly optional. I can also report that the bride wore a long white gown and the bride and groom sat next to the pool (which had flowers floating in it) and in front of one of the giant balloon arches in chairs that simulated thrones. We did not hear the chicken dance, but learned yesterday that it is sung to children here.
No more olives for breakfast
Our hotel was kind enough to make sure that we got breakfast even though we left before the buffet opened. I know Josh will really miss being served cucumbers for breakfast!
We took a few pictures and shot some video, during breaks from blowing up the air mattress for the boys, but they won't be available online for a couple days. The Web connection on the 6th floor is pretty weak.
As for the rest of the day, we had a dynamite breakfast made by Handam, Burchin's and Shepnam's mother. One sign that my time here has wrought some changes is that I had a second helping of the tomato, pepper and cheese curd salad that she made. Many of you will doubt that I ate raw tomatoes for breakfast, but it's true. Alex mostly kept to bread and jam, but I think he tried most of what was served. We stayed for about 2 hours and enjoyed ourselves immensely and then we said our near-tearful goodbyes. Alex and Josh both went back for second and third helpings of kisses from pretty girls before we headed up the hill with our gift of Turkish Delight in hand to finish packing.
We hit the road soon after and had an uneventful drive back to the airport. The rental car company that we used, unfortunately, is not the kind of outfit that springs for its own desk at or near the terminal, so I spent at least a half hour looking around for a guy to give the key and my credit card to. That done, we checked in. Rather confoundingly, the Pegasus Airlines lady who checked us in and gave us our boarding passes refused to check our bags through to Ankara. Somehow the computer was to blame, but I'm not clear on this point. Also, our plane was running about a half hour late, so I started having visions of getting to Istanbul and having to choose between missing our connection to Ankara or leaving our suitcases in Turkey. Josh must have polished his silver Pegasus charm because we barely had time to get off the plane, pick up our bags at the carousel, scoot to the next terminal, go through security, check in, go through security again and hop on the plane. Just typing all that makes me woozy. By the time we plopped our tails into our seats I was feeling pretty smug for having stopped and picked up pide, peaches, apples and other snacks for the trip because there is no way we would have had time to find food.
As Mike observed via email, every trip has to have a glitch, so I'm hoping that was ours. The kids are sleeping now (the music finally cut off) and I'm considering whether I will sleep or just stay up because I'm worried about missing the only flight out of here tomorrow if I oversleep. Josh has now been 10 for 41 minutes (Turkey time)--Happy Birthday, Josh!
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