Whats Going on in the Life of the Ward's
This Blog is my quarterly update's on what's happening in our life
Since Being in Istanbul Turkey it would seem that funny things keep happening to me. So here are few of those stories for you to enjoy. I will keep adding to it as things keep happening.
Crazy Day in Turkey
Thursday April 23
I am in Istanbul, Turkey for one week visiting my YWAM outreach teams that are here on outreach for 3 months. I got here a few days ago and found my sleeping accommodations to be the floor of this very old musty church. I was tired from not sleeping for 50 hours so I stayed up till bed time and went and made my bed on the basement floor. I noticed a bad smell and the team had told me it could be bad, but I was tired I thought it would be ok. Well throughout the night the smell go so bad it was like raw sewage. I kept waking up and feeling the floor because I swore I was floating in it. It was one of the worse smells I have had to endure. In the morning with very little sleep the team informed me the place I had made my bed was the worse spot in the whole place. The next night I moved and it was a little better.
Well yesterday was a crazy day. We had to move from the Asia side of Turkey to the Europe side (yes Turkey is in both Asia and Europe, amazing!). So the entire team packs up and walks down the street with all of our luggage in tow to find a bus. Now just picture a line of 13 people with huge bags walking down a cobble stone streets causing everyone to stare. We find our bus and its during rush hour as the Turks are on their way to work. We are crammed in and my feet are cramping as I try to stand up strait as we herk and jerk and I try to keep from falling on top of an old Turkish man. ( I kept hearing myself in the future saying "remember the day on the bus with all our luggage and I fell on top of that old Turkish man") We get off the bus and haul our luggage up stairs in a cafe to have our breakfast, then haul our luggage to catch a ferry and I made another Turkish man mad as he almost tripped. We then again walked to catch a tram and we are smashed in. Once off the tram we walk 20 minutes through winding streets while carrying all our luggage. Needless to say it was super crazy and today I am really sore from pulling my duffle bag, back pack and another bag through the streets. Once we finally get to the hostel where we are to stay, we find out there is no room and mistake has happened. So a van comes to take us to another hostel and we are crammed in again going for a wild ride through these tiny streets to finally get to our non english speaking hostel that smells of smoke but at least I have a bed, shower and no raw sewage. All this happened before noon. Then we go back to the main part of the city and go to the Museum. That was absolutely amazing. I literally am looking at things that Daniel and Esther looked at. I have never seen anything like it, truly amazing. We walked and got caught in a crazy rain storm so we stopped to have tea but it was outside and very cold but we did have a covering. The Turkish men served us and an older man that washes dishes asks me if he can get his picture taken with me. I was like "ok" but he only was interested in me. Then there was this younger good looking Turk that was waiting on us and another one that was older and spoke English. The one who spoke english asked me if the younger guy could get his picture taken with me. I asked “why” and he just said he really wanted to. So I said “yes” and the guy put his face close to mine and his arm around me as his friend took a picture with his phone. Now they are not paying any attention to the rest of the team. I am sitting a bit away with an older lady Lynn on our team and this young guy just thought I was the greatest thing ever for some reason. He would keep smiling at me and just staring at me. He went and got at table cloth and put them over Lynn and I's shoulders to keep us warm. When we went to leave he kissed me on both cheeks. It was very funny to me. The team said that is actions towards me where not normal. Hey maybe I will bring me home a Turk. Just kidding. But it was funny and a little curious as to why he did not pay any attention to anyone else. We then walked through the rain storm caught another tram and then walked down this crazy hill for a long time to our hostel. I had ad a great turkish meal and finally had a good night sleep.
Turkish Carpet Salesman
Turkish Carpet Salesman
Saturday April 25 in the Morning.
I tell you I can't figure it out why I am so popular around here. At first I thought maybe these guys wanted to get their picture taken with me because I was an oddity and the other girls looked somewhat normal. But I can't figure it out as they seem to really think I am something. Its getting a little scary though. I spent a day alone in the city (maybe not the greatest idea for a single woman). I was quite proud of myself as I figured out how to navigate through the city without speaking english. I found myself down this empty ally way and I was looking in a shop window when an older Turkish man approached me and he spoke very good english. He was a carpet salesman who once lived in the USA and he asked me to come see his shop and have tea with him. I thought well he looks harmless enough so I went. He offered me a smoke and I lit up. Just joking, I declined but drank the flower tea. He spoke good english and we chatted but he kept reaching over to hold my hand. I thought he was safe because he was old, I would take my hand away and he would later grab it and start rubbing it and telling me how sweet I was. He wanted me to stay but I finally escaped. Not long after another younger carpet sales man speaking broken english tries to get me and I tell him I can't talk. He asks me if I have a boyfriend in this country as he chases me down the street. Now every time I walk by that part of the town he tries to get me. He literally stands in the middle of the sidewalk feet planted trying to talk to me. The team thinks its funny and are a little confused as well as to why this keeps happening to me. It really has made for some funny stories though. I am alone in the city again today and I am sure something is bound to happen. I have two more nights in this country. I am proud of myself as I travel alone through the city on different buses and trains. The team thinks I am very brave and I have to agree that I am. But the other night in the ghetto part of town where we are staying I was alone trying to find some dinner and it was getting dark and there where hundreds of Turkish men around (the woman are not out as much) I started to get nervous and was so tired of being watched and starred at that I found food and went back to my room to stay for the night.
Sprawled Out on the Sidewalk
Saturday April 25 in the Afternoon
Its a sunny Saturday afternoon in Istanbul and a very busy day in town. The streets are full of Turkish people as well as many tourists from all different nations. The trams and buses are stuffed to the gills. I decided I want to eat lunch in a different part of town today so I hop on a tram and take it down a few stops and get off. Well I get off in a very busy part of town. People are running everywhere getting lunch. Cars, taxies and buses crowd the streets. I have my hair down and my heavy polka-dot back pack on. I get whisked away in the crowd trying to find somewhere to have lunch. I am not entirely paying attention as I am looking around. All of a sudden much to the surprise of myself and all the Turkish people around me I find my feet on some uneven pavement and in slow motion I feel myself going down. I am falling thinking in my mind that this is not happening. Thud, I hit the sidewalk and my backpack comes up over my head and my glasses fly off my face and my hair goes everywhere. People are all around me and I am sprawled out in the middle of the sidewalk in all of my glory. I feel pain shooting through my right leg. As quickly as possible I attempt to stand as a Turkish man leans down and hands me my glasses. I am shocked as I am able to stand quickly and I think to myself "walk it off Amy, walk it off". I don't look around me as I hobble down the sidewalk trying to get my bearings and assess the damage of my leg and dignity. All alone I start to laugh as I think of what a site that must have been to the Turkish people all around me. What might they be talking about during lunch today, I could just hear it "your not going to believe what I saw today" as they go on to explain a site they may very well have never seen before. I then determine that I can walk and that I will have a serious sore and bruised leg. Very humbly I find a back room in some little cafe and eat my lunch and thank Jesus I did not hurt myself worse. Just think the day is only half over who knows what might happen by tomorrow.
I Am A Friend of God
Saturday April 25th
So my day continues from falling on my face to being the friend of God. I have this tattoo on my arm that says “Friend of God”. Since being here its been very cold so I always have my coat on but today it warmed up an I took it off and had short sleeves on and I was walking around town alone. I was waiting by the train for the team to get back and there was this guy about my age standing near me trying to get people to go to a belly dancing show at the place he worked at. He spoke english and he looked at my arm and read my tattoo out loud. He asks me if I am a friend of God. In Turkey they worship Allah and he is not their friend. Now remember all the crazy guy stories I have from being here so far. Completely baffling really. But there are lots of people around so I let him continue to talk to me. When he does the prayer call goes off from the surrounding mosque’s and he tells me if I am a friend of God that I should go pray. I just smile at him. Another man joins him and we talk away. He talks for a long time joking around with me and then the team walks up and sees me once again in a interesting situation. They just laugh at me as they have not experienced all these situations I have found myself in. About an hour later we are going to go home and one of our students Lucas and I are waiting for the team on the other side of the street by the train. Now there is this guy again. So I stand a bit away from him and he calls out to me “Friend of God”. I answer him and he asks me to pray to my God that he would not die. I tell him that he will die one day. He says “no” that he does not want to die and I should pray to my God because I am His friend. He says no again and I tell him that he will indeed die but the important part is where he is going when he does die. Then he jokes around with me telling me he won’t and I joke back telling him “well if you wrong, your dead wrong”. As we wait he just talks away and I am still standing a ways away from him as he tries to get passer buyers to stop in the place he works. He keeps calling out to me “friend of God”. Lucas says “he is just asking for it go over them and prophesy over him”. So I do. I go to him and say “well I am a friend of God, and my God talks to me and He is talking to me about you”. His eyes get big as he steps back and holds on to a street pole. I just launch in and tell him about himself and what he has been doing and thinking and what he can do. He just kept backing up more and more and said “no more, no more”. He said “ you work with the church” and I said “how do you know that” and he pointed to my eyes and said “I can see it in your eyes”. I smiled and he just freaked out. Then the team came and we where waiting for the train and he said again “you are a christian” and I again asked him how he knew this and he said “I can see it on you”. I told him yes I was and talked a bit more as my train came and I told him to not forget what I told him as I said I can hear God speak. He was yelling after me as I boarded the train.
The Ward family adventures by Amy Ward