I woke up in my father’s bed in Kayseri around 8am. While my father was praying I started to prepare breakfast. My father appreciates when I make my bed, help to prepare breakfast or do the dishes – to me it feels natural – even though at home in Sydney, I don’t make my own bed – but pssst don’t tell him. After living on the road for many months, I quite enjoy simple mundane tasks, like dishes or cooking – especially in an actual kitchen- what a blessing. My grandmas face lit up, when she saw me doing the breakfast preparations. For breakfast we had the usual spread: Ceytin, peynir, ekmek, saladilik, capsicum, omelette, tahini, pekmez and pide. We finished breakfast with kahve and dark chocolate.
After breakfast we walked to the city centre, here my father showed me the ancient grave yard, the mosque, a church, which is now used as a library and the castle. My father introduced me to a lot of people and told them about me being his daughter and about my journey to him and to Kayseri. Later on we went with his cousin, who is a tooth technician to the dentist, as I have a tooth ache, that needs looking after.
Back at home we started dinner preparations. Cooking with my father brings me joy, and I think he feels the same. It is exciting to learn to cook foreign dishes and to see his way of doing things. While cooking we also practiced Turkish words.
Even though the past is not forgotten, I am very much concentrating on the present. We cannot turn back the time, mistakes were made. We only have now. And right now I am looking at my father, who looks just like me, we laugh, we cook, we walk. We certainly don’t share the same opinion in all things, but we don’t have to. For now we just enjoy, to get to know each other.
Recently he could not remember the name of a city he has been to, while investigating he said, ‚ I won’t be able to sleep, until I know the name of the city‘. I looked at him astonished, as I am often using the exact same phrase. I am looking forward to discover many other things we have in common.
Later on in the evening I met some more relatives: my aunt, her husband, my cousin and her kids. By this time my journey had been all over the news in Türkiye. We were laughing a lot about some comments below the article. Kayseri people are known for being stingy, hence someone said: ‘no dna test needed as she clearly has that Kayseri gen in her, as she came all the way by bicycle instead of paying the airfare.’ Quite hilarious I thought. While slurping on cay i answered questions about my journey and spoke about all the beautiful people along my way, who had met me with kindness, fed me or gave me shelter.
So long – hoscakal from Kayseri!
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