Pondering ponderosas for my summertime work fling, but what does that MEAN?

32 bottles of beer on the wall
     32 bottles of beer
Take one down, pass it around...
    31 bottles of beer on the wall

Pardon, I mean to say 32 days left in Istanbul. What am I pondering?

My lack of coffee this morning shifted my priorities and energies. I knew it was coming. I should have worked this out in advance, but... whatever. Perhaps there is a hidden cache of coffee somewhere in my kitchen cabinets, I thought.

Well, no there wasn't- as expected. Hesitant at first, I shifted into Plan B mode. Nearly 9 AM and I was out the door, running garb on. Equipped with my Yapi Kredi debit card, and enough change to catch a dolmus back to Büyükdere laden with my Macro Center groceries. Yes, Macro Center. I can be a food snob- especially right after pay day...

Moments earlier, as I lay in bed stalling the inevitable, last weekend's run drifts through my head front stage and center. A gorgeous day such as today, I headed out on my run at 10 AM. Not unusual this spring for me at all. I mean, this has been a long, slow build-up to typical spring weather in Istanbul. For example, it's May 14 (Happy Mother's Day (in a majority of countries anyway)) and I still don't need to have the fan on all the time. Highly unusual for Istanbul at this time, as well as for my digs (the top floor of an old stone building).

I had passed too many people, animals, fisher-folk messing around with their lines, lures, palls, etc. A maze of creatures all thriving at the water's edge- that's not exactly a deal breaker, but zig-zagging around people right at my personal space invisible shield weighed on me somehow.

Honestly, little gets me down where running is concerned these daze- mostly because I f*cking LOVE my Hoke One One shoes (as well as my heel inserts). Pillows I tell you. It's dreamy even. Honestly though, the best investment in running in a long time. Thank you so much Alex Garcia for giving me the 'Hoke One One' lecture that I needed.

Losing precious minutes as this entire scenario plays through my head this morning, I finally act. I must get going before 9 AM & before it gets both too hot, and too congested on the return trip dolmus ride through Tarabya at a snail's pace because there are too many tragically cool people that feel the need to double park their cars on the streets, because the 'no parking' signs aren't for them, etc.

I'm sounding pretty passive-aggressive right now actually. I need to just chill tf out- like I did yesterday, at Kilyos Beach with da kine. Yea, that was super sweet man. Just us two on the Black Sea for a bit until some more intrepid beach-goers filed in. Super refreshing sea, we frolicked as if no one was watching. Yet in fact, many were watching further up, where construction crews were working ferociously trying to prepare their 'beach clubs' for the season... Let me just say that I hate the idea of these so-called manicured beach clubs, where you pay a fee to sit in some shitty plastic lawn chair in close proximity to many others. It's the fucking beach man.

But I digress. I made the move. Within 5 minutes I was out the door. There was such a different vibe just one hour earlier that last week's run. It still felt like 'early morning'. Perhaps it's because I hadn't had any coffee yet? Whatever. There were runners, walkers, fisher-folk, cyclists, but it was just different. Perhaps next week I can make it out by 8 AM, and see a different crew entirely. It will have to happen anyway, as the weather is, finally, starting to heat up.

Jubilant, I passed the finish line (Macro Center entrance), took a triumphant deep breath and walked inside. Now, there is a certain gleeful element in my Macro Center trips. First, they are elusive. Generally, once a month, and usually right after pay day- when I feel like I am at my most wealthy point for the remainder of the month...

As well, only Macro Center has tortilla chips, and some of that special shit that I simply need to exist: free trade black beans and wild rice; chocolate macchiado soy milk, Pumpernickel bread, etc. Out the door and into the dolmus for a leisurely return trip I was. I also scored a seat immediately. Winning bigly. 

Speaking of flings, there has been this book being passed around at work. It just landed on my desk this past week. Magic. Midnight at the Pera Palace I shall begin. Feeling like it is a perfect send off from my time spent here in Istanbul.

Emotions spill over. Shit. I'm leaving Istanbul. In essence, Istanbul has been an awesome lover, yet I was, rather naively,  initially at least, expecting a long-term union. Alas, this connection was not to be. Acceptance and gratitude for readying myself to jump back on that bucking bronco to yet another location.

You see, I am constantly scouting out locations- looking for that next level. Why I haven't 'found' it is not a question to ask. She who feels it, knows it- in those moments. There are so many different moments though. I cast my net long and wide. Let the tide take me in, lather me up, cleanse me, educate me, and throw me upon another shoreline to soak up the scenery.

The obsession with Ken Burns documentaries on YouTube persists, along with Persepolis, Assyrian civilization, Gnostics, Göbekli Tepe, Babylon, Essenes, Dead Sea Scrolls, Enoch, Commagene, Natives of North America, etc. I am rich with wonder right now.

Gimme. Gimme. Gimme