This past week has been quite an eventful one, which ended in me booking flights to visit Turkey in less than 2 weeks time!
Berkay started his national service on 4th February 2015, so we were expecting him to finish around that date this year, but we knew he still had 3 weeks holiday that he hadn’t used so thought he would finish a few weeks early. I’d been asking him for weeks if he knew an actual leaving date yet, but he hadn’t had any news… until last week! They told him his official date was 18th January…. so soon…. TOMORROW!!!
I think he is excited about finishing, although a little nervous too. His plan is to go back to his family’s village for a week and then head back to Fethiye. He’s already been ringing up friends and ex-bosses there trying to find work. He really has nowhere to go, as he always lived in the hotel he worked in, and stayed in the staff accommodation under the hotel in winter even when it was closed. He has no money, and no job to go back to. We’re hoping he has the opportunity to work in the same hotel again in the summer, but he still needs something until then… The problem with doing his army service so late is that because he was so much older, he had more of a life before going in, we had possessions, although not many, a chest of drawers, clothes, plates, cutlery, a mini oven, kettle, heater etc, which we have now just lost because he had nowhere to store them while away… any money he had saved (which wasn’t much) has been used and he has nothing at all, so I think it’s going to take some real adjusting for him to get back into the real world again after a year away. He also says he’s a little sad about leaving the friends he’s made in the base camp, after spending 24/7 with them they’ve got close and they probably won’t meet again because they come from all over the country, but they can all keep in touch via Facebook.
It still doesn’t seem real to me that he’s leaving the army tomorrow, and that that chapter of our lives will be finished. I was reluctant to believe it when he told me, and I still won’t entirely believe it until I get a message on Monday saying that he’s free! Plans are already in place though, so it’s 99.9% certain.. he’s booked his bus ticket to Denizli (a 13 hour journey!) for 6pm Monday evening, so it’s all becoming very real! I will be waiting for that ‘I’m out!’ message tomorrow while I’m at work.
Even more exciting, is the fact that I booked my flights out to see him later this month! There were no direct flights to Dalaman from London so I had settle for flying via Istanbul which I’m a bit nervous about. Lots of people I’ve spoken to have done this before but I’m certain I’ll get lost! Flying alone doesn’t bother me, but finding my way through an airport I’ve never been to and making it in time for my connecting flight is quite scary! I’m flying with Turkish airlines which I’m quite excited about as I’ve never flown with them before, and I hear they are very good. I got a good deal, return flights, 23kg of luggage, seat selection plus food and drink on board all included for £141. Bargain! I have just this minute booked an apartment for us in Calis, and done my travel insurance so it’s all quite exciting… I go for 10nights on 28th January, 11 more sleeps and counting..
Thank you all for putting up with my boring, repetitive ‘army’ posts for the past year, I think we can all breathe a sigh of relief that it will finally all be over!
Just ONE more day…