A Very Merry Christmas from Istanbul

Presents under the tree

Clare, John and Jessica arrived the Saturday before last to spend Christmas with us. Unfortunately, Clare's suitcase (the one with all the presents in) failed to arrive (it still hasn't). Fortunately, Father Christmas was able to make a plan B.

This meant frantic shopping, not just for the Christmas presents, but also to clothe Clare, who only had the clothes she arrived in. The weather has been quite miserable - bitterly cold and sleeting - which is a pity as, up until Clare, John and Jessica arrived, we have had mild sunny weather.

Jessica left a plate of chocolate and nuts for Father Christmas, which she arranged especially for him.

Jessica enjoyed opening her presents on Christmas Day.

On Christmas day the sun shone and, after opening our presents, we went to the Hilton Hotel for Christmas Brunch. This involved travelling on a dolmuş (a small bus); a ferry across the Bosphorus; a tram; a funicular railway and a taxi. The lunch was amazing and well worth the travel as we managed to stay the course for three hours! Thanks to Skype we were able to talk to Jane in South Africa and Suzi in Australia, so we felt our family was together. Hooray for technology!

We were grateful for the sunny Christmas day, as, on Boxing Day, the rain came down again. Fortunately our apartment is warm and we can look down on the world going by outside in our very busy street. It was so cold and wet that we decided to defer my birthday dinner and ordered in pizzas instead! Today is dry, so the dinner is on!

As to my birthday, I went from being an insurable 65 to an apparently decrepit 66 (as far as insurance is concerned) over night, and yet I feel no different. In fact, 66 sounds wrong. How can I possibly be that old?

Just to prove I can be domesticated, I have just taken up the hem on Clare's new trousers!


  1. Happy New Year Liz and David, Susie, Jane and Clare and families!!!
    It is really a pleasure to keep up with your lives through the blog, so keep it up girl.
    'Er indoors started two blogs recently called Life in the Tropics and Mundo Merliot - here are the links if you are interested
    This year we are staying here for the holidays and pottering about El Salvador as we have been rather consumed with Antigua during recent years - hope to meet up with Cory this weekend in Suchitoto (I think you will remember her from your Maths teaching days here)
    Have a great 2009.
    J,C,C(osta) and c(hloe)

  2. Happy New Year to you too! May it be the best one ever! Thaks for the links to Catherine's blogs, I look forward to tracking them. We must make a plan for next summer.
    Love to Cory when you see her and, of course, love to you both (and Costa and Chloe) xxxx


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