Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Snow Day!

For the last week Istanbul has been hit by a succession of snowstorms, creating mayhem and panic among the temperate clime-acclimated populace here.  I used to say that Istanbullus handled rain and snow as well as Washingtonians do, if Washington were 5 times bigger, built on a series of steep hills, and all of its cars were manual transmission.  However, after a series of transportation snafus leaving work last night that led me to walk to the train station, I can say that one part of winter is better here: sidewalks are obsessively shoveled at the first hint of snow.  This is no small feat, given that I have never seen a snow shovel in this city, and it took about three weeks for my block to be free of snow and ice after 2010's Snowpocolypse.  It was actually a pleasantly brisk walk to the metro, and I got to say that I walked home, uphill and in the snow.  Ha!

So the Consulate is closed today (apparently the city has asked all private cars to stay off the roads, and many busses and ferries aren't running either), and I'm at home my PJs on and a kitty in my lap.  Eric works part-time at an NGO in town while he finishes his master's thesis, and today was one of his workdays - (un)luckily for him, his office is very close to a metro station, so he can get to work with no problem.  As he left this morning, I kissed him goodbye at the door in a bizarre reversal of our normal routine - I always leave for work a few hours before he does.  30 seconds later, he knocked on the door because he realized he had forgotten his wallet, keys, and phone: apparently the switch up in our routine had thrown him off!

I feel like I should do something super domestic since I'm at home today, or at least have dinner ready when he gets home.  However, he promised to cook me dinner tonight, so I think I'll just work remotely today and enjoy upending traditional gender roles.  :)

Update: Apparently when I said work remotely, I actually meant I would register on a wedding planning website and marvel at how much people appear to obsess over weddings.  I've got a venue, I've got an officiant, I've got a date, and I've got a fiance.  Am I supposed to do anything else?  :P

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Busy Busy

You'd think I'd learn that Istanbul is never slow - even in our down times at work, we're still kept busy with everything we can't do during the visit crunch.  December was great - we got a lot of reporting done, in anticipation of January being mostly a lost month for us.  On the weekend of January 6-8, we got slammed with three congressional delegations, which kept me busy the entire time.  After my delegation went wheels up for their next stop, Eric took me out to dinner at an Asian restaurant we love. (There are so few in town, and this one has a great view overlooking the Bosphorus bridge.)

I got a bit of a surprise before dinner, though - Eric proposed!  Unsurprisingly, I said yes - and now we find ourselves in a bit of a scramble planning a wedding in 2.5 months.  The big day is 31 March, here in Istanbul, just a few weeks before we PCS to Tripoli.

No rest for the weary around here - though this is the kind of busy-ness I can get on board with.  :)