Hazy gaze

It’s the morning of my last day and my eyes count the minutes on my watch. I escape the flat for one last visit to the street, a moment to participate in the morning rush. Fresh orange juice from the corner stall, a biscuit from a bakery bustling with commuters. I race back up to the fourth floor unit, suck up the juice, scan my bags. It’s time to go and I suddenly see rain pounding on the asphalt. I’d waited too long and blame it on the orange juice.  I carry my bags down the spiral staircase, noting their levity. The souvenirs will have to wait until next trip. Trouble in Taksim thwarted my plan for a final afternoon of purchases in Istanbul. There will be no extra baklava, no birthday bathrobe for Matthew, no visit to the Istanbul Modern.  And the sultan suit I wanted to buy for my little nephew, that too will just have to be forgotten.

Wet with rain, I sit in the back of the taxi, practicing my Turkish with the taxi driver between the SHHHHH of flooding water pounding the side of the car. It’s wet and gray, and a lone tear escapes from my gaze and slides down the right side of my cheek. I startle myself. This ability to adapt, to be oneself somewhere else with such ease,  is what I consider to be one of my greatest strengths. It’s also an eternal challenge. The desire to always be, somewhere. Istanbul felt so familiar, a mosaic of Lisbon in many ways—to me at least. I feel like things just started and yet it is time to leave.  What just unfolded before my eyes? If only I could stay a bit longer and begin to answer that question.

Day 1 of 30; Postcards from Turkey

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~ by maureenmoore on July 9, 2013.

4 Responses to “Hazy gaze”

  1. Finally you identified for me what amazes me the most about you and your travels and all that goes into that: “the ability to adapt, to be oneself somewhere else with such ease….” Yes, amazing, and notable. It stands out to me because it’s foreign (get the pun?) to me. It IS a strength. It is your gift. I’m always curious to see its fullest potential realized (safely). Thanks for your 30 days of sharing on this latest trek. So sorry about that lone tear, but so grateful that because it’s real, you are credible 🙂

    • Thank you, M! Serendipitously found a fascinating article on nostalgia in the NYT today-it’s the link I included when referencing Lisbon above. Makes that tear feel all the more validated.

  2. What a gift! To be authentically you regardless of circumstance or location. Thank you dear friend for sharing this sentimental moment.

  3. I can see you in that taxi on that last day in Istanbul. You help me feel what you were feeling. so powerful. thank you.

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