Neil's wheelless 18‏

18. May 17, 2012

Attention Neil stalkers:

Neil stays true to his pattern. He continues to talk with anyone that he can. He has had conversations with:

-an Indonesian couple who were on vacation from their work in Dubai,

-a Taiwanese lady with a broken ankle in a walking cast,

-a shopkeeper who told him that he was originally from Washington DC where he worked for the CIA and that his name was Bond James Bond, and

-Arthur Bonner, a retired foreign correspondent for the NY Times who is 90 years old. He is now a long-time resident of Turkey – which he arranged by depositing a lot of money in a Turkish bank. Mr. Bonner was in Afghanistan before the Russians and wrote a book about it called Among the Afgans.

Yesterday Neil got a Turkish bath. I told him it was about time. He has been in Turkey for over a week now. I misunderstood. Taking a bath in Turkey is different from getting a Turkish bath.

He was directed to a cubical to disrobe and given a locker key and a small towel (for modesty’s sake). He then was led to a steam room with a 6-foot square pedestal. Much to his surprise, there was a lady lying on one side of the raised platform. Much to his disappointment, she also had a small towel strategically placed. After a few minutes, she left for further treatments elsewhere.

He was left there to contemplate his sins and to steam for about 20 minutes. Next, he got a vigorous soapy rubdown (from a masseur and not a masseuse). Following that, another vigorous rubdown, this time the masseur used a scratchy glove. Neil said it felt like he was trying to abrade away the warts on his back.

For a break, they gave him very hot tea and an apple. Then, back to the treatment – an oily deep rubbing. He had a little pain when the guy pushed on the scar of his leg (from the German tractor incident). Otherwise, he said that it felt very good. An hour and a half later and with a lot of his outer skin down the drain, he was done.

For 40 Lira (US$ 22), did he take a financial bath in Turkey?

Afterwards, he went to a Swiss ice cream parlor, had some chocolate chip, and watched the Mediterranean.

There are lots of Roman ruins everywhere in Antalya. If you are there, Hadrian’s Gate is just around the corner from Burger King. If it isn’t the Romans, it’s some other bunch of foreigners ruining the culture.

Neil took 50 Clif Energy Bars with him. He has been using them for snacks when he got a little peckish. He is now down to the last one. At least, the luggage is getting lighter. He also took a bunch of paperback books to read. He is down to War and Peace and the Koran.

His persistent cough continues (obviously, or it wouldn’t be persistent). When he asked about buying some cough drops, the pension guy got him some. I told him to not bring them back into the US. Who knows what exotic narcotics are in them? That’s all I need – my father-in-law busted for importing opiate-based pills!

For dinner last night, Neil had butterfly macaroni topped with yogurt and honey.

Still, no camera. =) =(

-Steve

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