24 October 2013

What's the Difference?

Naturally, one would expect there to be many differences between life in a small Turkish town and one in Canada. As winter approaches, my thoughts have roamed towards staying warm here in the high Anatolian plateau. At home in Gibsons, I’d be thinking of which of my abundant clothes to wear to keep out the damp fall chill. Here in Avanos, I’m contemplating how much blanket-weight I can stand on my bed at night to stay warm and still be able to turn over. And I’m timing my showers in the unheated bathroom so I can warm myself afterwards in the still-strong sun. When the water from the ‘cold’ tap actually feels pleasantly warm on your hands in the morning…. well…. you know winter is coming.

And, regardless of the seasons, there are the practicalities of everyday life…..
As I browsed Facebook yesterday, I came across a notice from the Town of Gibsons advising of water works on Gibsons Way, letting people know that there would be interruptions in their water supply.  “How clever”, I thought, “to post such a thing on social media.” People in the affected area probably also received little printed information sheets in the mail or to their doors. Imagine the uproar if the water went off without notice!

This morning, I woke with a start to the sound of a tractor outside my window. First thought: “Gee, those garbage men are early today….”  Next, the unmistakable tinkle of cobblestones being stacked neatly. Then the house shook (which isn’t easy to do: it’s a 300 year old stone house built into the mountainside) with the thudding of a backhoe. Next thought: “Oh RATS! I bet there’s no water!!”  Sure enough, the tap runs dry. So no shower this morning. Guess I have to wait. But how long?  Anybody’s guess.  You’ll certainly never get a straight answer out of the workmen: “Inshallah, soon,” would be the likely response.  So no one bothers to ask. Good thing we have a stash of filled 10-litre water bottles under the sink in the (also unheated) kitchen.

There’s a good deal of chatter in the street at the moment. Everyone seems to be working.  Inshallah, I’ll have my shower before the sun sets. Unless it clouds over first....

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