Our family just returned from an absolutely wonderful vacation to Turkey's west coast! A few weeks ago, we bought some wonderfully cheap plane tickets to Izmir, Turkey and booked 4 nights in a local hotel. The days leading up to the trip were filled with anticipation and excitement for a new adventure and nervousness at the thought of traveling all by ourselves in a foreign country. And then Peter got sick.
The night before our trip, Dan and I wrestled with the idea of cancelling our trip to spend the week at home taking care of our little guy with the sniffles. The next morning we woke up, completely unpacked, and took our sniffling, coughing little man to the doctor. She reported that he had an infection in one ear. But then reassured us that she'd put Peter on antibiotics right away and encouraged us to go on our trip anyway.
There was too little time to think too much about it. It was 10:00 am. The shuttle was scheduled to take us to the airport at 2:00 pm. We flew into action and started packing. Up until this point, I had apprehension about the trip. But suddenly, I felt at peace and ready to go.
We miraculously pulled everything together and made it to the airport shuttle pick up by 2:00 pm. Then our adventure began. Arriving at the Adana Airport was our first experience of being foreigners in a place where little (or no) English was spoken. We gestured and guessed our way through the airport security, check-in, and baggage check and waited for our flight to board.
While we were waiting, Peter spotted a Turkish woman with a little lap dog. Peter loves dogs and immediately hopped off my lap to meet his new friend. As we approached, the woman spoke several Turkish sentences to me, in which I smiled and nodded "I don't understand". She then responded in perfect English that she was from Turkey but currently lives in Canada. Ah, thank You, Jesus. She was the first of many angels that God sent to us on our journey. God is such a loving Father, His guiding hand was with us every step of the way.
Our new friend, Gabby, and her dog, Maggie, interpreted the flight announcements for us so that we'd board the right plane. Before long, we were on the plane headed for Izmir. The flight was a little over an hour and Peter was a great traveler! He loved looking out the window at the massive mountains below us. When we arrived in Izmir, we hopped on a Havas (like a Turkish Hertz) bus and drove to the hotel.
Our hotel was absolutely amazing. It was in the heart of downtown Izmir overlooking the Aegean Sea. The hotel staff greeted us and gave us a traditional Turkish winter drink made of orchid seeds, hot milk, sugar and cinnamon. YUM! They warmly welcomed Peter and placed a Hot Wheels car in his little hand. We settled into our room and ordered room service (a luxury we had never done before!) as we got our little man into his pj's.
A great first day...and our adventure was only beginning!