Day 6: Ciftlik
(Plants in tins on a side street in Ciftlik, Turkey.)
I looked up the symptoms of heat exhaustion, and like a greedy kindergartener, I had them all. When had I stopped sweating? I kicked the stray dogs out of the shade and sipped water while the breeze cooled me. The first rule of travel is hydrate; I needed to double my water intake to make up for the high temperatures.
The internet said that if you have all of the symptoms and you're confused, you need to go to the hospital. Um, not the travel excitement I was looking for. I figured that if the hospital could slowly add 2 liters of liquid into my body, I could, too.
It was time to hydrate. I returned to the hotel and sipped water for hours. By one o'clock the nausea went away and so did the confusion but the crowning achievement was being once again covered in sweat.
The shade of the pool was my afternoon refuge; I used up my second pen writing in my journal since my keyboard died. Miss that keyboard. It was time for more adventure, so I walked down the hill and turned right at the sea. That's where I found my people. Regular People. Locals. There was no champagne sipping or snapping fingers at the wait staff from the back of a yacht. In fact there were no yachts in Ciftlik.
I sat in a cafe and made small talk with a Turkish woman in my age group. I spoke in English, she in her language. She showed me her ripped shopping bag and shared what was most likely her tough day stories. I talked about heat exhaustion and feeling relaxed for the first time since school let out. We spoke back and forth for 20 minutes or so, when she looked at her watch, paid for our drinks, gave me a quick hug and said"Good-bi a fr-nd!!" It was a shock to hear her speak English.
To return the thoughtfulness, I said my Turkish word of the day back to her, "Salatalik!"
(Cucumber) She shook my hand and we both laughed one more time.