A Toddler in Turkey

Posted on
Apr 17, 2017

We went to Turkey with our friends and their toddler.

This seems impossible now, six short months later. I suspect it will seem even more impossible in the coming years. But we went from Istanbul to Cappadocia, and he wandered in the dust and the sunshine.

Imagine the hearts that will be broken.

And he tried to eat my husband’s nose.

This is my signature move and the kid is totally stealing it.


I was nervous in Turkey. I realized after we left how anxious I’d been. The stories of the coup and the terrorist attacks throughout downtown and the bazaar hadn’t stopped me from exploring those areas, but it had left me with a deep seated feeling of unease. I had fun, I appreciated the beauty of it all, but I couldn’t relax, not for a single second. I asked Rand if he had been at all scared during our trip.

He said only once, when he hadn’t been thinking responsibly, and took the wee one up a steep flight of stone stairs as they explored.


He worried about the tangible, about the things he could control. I worried about what I couldn’t. In the end, we were fine – not simply on those steps, but throughout Turkey. Through the endless spice market and around the mosques and in the airport.

I think of the wee one, who will not remember our trip. He will simply see photos of himself, running towards a camel or trying to grab Rand’s camera in the shadow of the Blue Mosque.



I see his face, looking up at me over the shoulder of his father and Rand.


I wonder what the world will look like when he is grown. I wonder what Turkey will be like. And I hope that our first trip there is not our last.

Leave a Comment

  • Wil Reynolds

    Yo, read this and got a huge smile on my face, but also remember that this almost didn’t happen. With all that was going on, I was scared, it’s one thing for Nora and I to put ourselves in harms way, but a baby who doesn’t get to pick where he goes, ran through my mind over and over. I sat on a few nights secretly hoping you and rand would be like, its dangerous right now, lets skip it. That email, text, call, IM, never came, and now I am thankful that it didn’t. I remember saying to Nora, terror wins if we don’t get out and do “what we do” which also includes being reminded that people all over are just trying to live and make life better for their kids and families. Thank you for this post, it brought me back to a good place, happy times, and a reminder that we kepts doing “what we do” all 6 of us. You, Me, Rand, Rio, Emily, and Nora. You all have been great friends to us, your willingness to get bigger cars, and to drive most of the time, without so much as as peep that its a problem has made me feel like its not a big deal to bring the crew, over and over and over.


    1 pic of my boy in a Seahawks jersey, just as a thank you!!

    • A lot of the news about Turkey has had me on edge, too. I remember thinking, just after we got back, when the bombing hit the soccer stadium just a stone’s throw from our hotel in Istanbul, that there’d be no way I’d have argued in favor of us going had that happened aonth prior.

      I feel so lucky to have seen Turkey, and so lucky to have you and Nora as friends, and so thankful that we had that window. I want to go everywhere with Geraldine and with you and Rio, too. Let’s keep planning these, and I promise to pick some more chill spots next round 🙂

    • Everywhereist
  • All About Sana

    What a sweet post with a touching conclusion. I pray for peace as well (sometimes; mostly pray or selfish reasons I guess, I need to change that) 🙂

  • Cole Whisnant

    I live in Münich and was born in Pähl and I love the adventures you post about traveling!

  • Beautiful photos and I love the fear insights comparing what you can control versus can’t control. I also happen to love traveling toddlers because I have twin toddlers and we fly to Dubai next week – making their grand total ten countries on four continents before they turn three. They may not remember it but I sure will.

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