The good, the bad and the ugly
08.07.2010 27 °C
It was a mission - but we - to coin a phrase "knocked the bastard off" 38 hours of straight travel and I am pleased to say we all lived to tell the tail - all slightly sleep deprived but pretty good considering. That 38 hours of our lives is all a bit of a haze but as I recall it all started to turn a bit pear shaped in Auckland when we thought that Toby was behaving like a little sh** but by the time we got to Sydney it was apparent he wasn't well - miserable with a rip roaring fever - topped off by a huge vomit just as we landed. Now you know how dark it is when a plane lands - I couldnt find a sick bag to save myself, hastly I grabbed a plastic sleeve (turned out to be the same plastic sleeve that held the sick bag) that had some magazines in it just in the nick of time. Feeling pretty proud of myself my elation disappeared as I discovered I had probably found the only bag in the plane with a hole in it and as fast as it was going in it was running out all over his clothes and the seat! The next time he vomitted Matt had him and I was stuck with Bellie asleep on me. Even though we took a carseat for Bella she didn't sleep that great in it even after a dose of Phergan and woke and yelled every half hour. She loves to sleep on her tummy so the minute I got her out she crashed - however this meant I wasn't able to help Matt clean up Tob - and Matt is not good with vomit but I must say this time he came into his own. Even despite the description he has just given me of Toby having put his hand over his mouth at the last minute and the spew went all over his face and pretty much showered Matt. (Only a nurse could write this much about vomit) The air hostesses were far less than helpful, really it would be fair to say they treated us like we had the plague. The Sydney - Dubai flight was 14 hours - far to long for any sane person. By this time Toby was wearing Hollys 3/4 jeans with flowers on them as after the spew and a wee issue we had exhausted all spares. Luckily he thought it was pretty cool (you never know quite which way it is going to go with Tob)
The oasis in Dubai was that we had two rooms in a hotel near the airport - meaning that we all got a couple of hours sleep - just enough to get us through our next flight which was in 6 hours time. Stepping out of the airport in Dubai was like stepping into a fan heater. It was 42 degrees - looked like an awesome place for shopping but I think I'd melt. The kids were convinced we were in the middle of a volcano - Toby loves the heat - didn't do much for his fever though.
So anyway - we boarded our plane for the last leg of our journey a 4 hour flight to Istanbul. Unfortunately it was off to a bad start with them having to search for and off load 6 peoples bags who hadn't turned up. The inside of the plane was well over 40 degrees poor old Miss Bellie got herself into a real hot lather and that pretty much set the scene for the rest of the flight. She was a 3 phase baby - very engaging and chatting up the kind Turkish man in the seat in front, or screaming, or asleep - for a few moments only.
Luckily we were promptly met at Istanbul airport and taken to our abode. We have a very nice apartment in the old city with 3 bedrooms and airconditioning - fantastic for everyone to catch up on some sleep and begin to explore a new part of the world. The view out our kitchen window is of the Blue Mosque - stunning and just a little different than the tyre shop we see out the window at Dorset Street.
This is our view
Today we went out for what was meant to be a short stroll to find a park. However this city is like a maze and a couple of wrong turns meant we walked almost three times the distance we should have. We wandered around the Blue Mosque - taking in the sights. From there we headed down to Gulhane Park where the kids enjoyed some icecream and a run around. Amazing how quickly they adapt to a completely different culture and are very accepting - it amazed us that they barely raised an eyebrow at the women wearing Burkas, we were cringing wondering what loud comments they were going to announce but next minute Bella was accepting scorched almonds from the women and waving and chatting away.
Toby has started antibiotics for what was obviously a bad Strep throat once we had a torch to look at it. Luckily I had brought some antibiotics with me which saved us wandering around looking for a doctor late at night. I popped in to a pharmacy today and it seems you can buy anything without a prescription so have replaced stock and are taking orders Annie if the the hospital wants to cut it's drug budget.
This afternoon we all had a wee Nana nap and were very surprised to wake up at 5pm. The kids have crashed again tonight. Sleep deprivation is a funny thing you are in such a deep sleep that is takes about 30 seconds to work out where you are. The call to prayer at 4.30am was interesting - Toby and Bella slept through it and Holly was up and off on a mission (maybe it was her calling) though was easily redirected and had no recollection of having heard it this morning.
The kids are a real magnet with the locals mainly the men chatting away to them and wanting to stroke their hair. Luckily our kids are pretty confident and not bothered. We have noticed an obvious difference wandering the streets with the kids, you get far less hasseled to buy carpets and ceramics - we think they are probably not keen for our kids to be running around their shops climbing the piles of carpets. Matt reckons this could be to our advantage in the long run and get us some good prices to get rid of us.
So thats the first day and we are amazed at how quickly we have all settled in. The travel Matt says will just be like child birth and the memories will fade rapidly - even though right now I am thinking we should take a boat home (may just take us another 3 months.) We were laughing today and wondering how it could have been worse - Matt suggested a delay would have awful, I could only come up with a plane crash.