Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine I would be moving to a foreign country to live, let alone a country in the Middle East. Over the 2009 Christmas and New Year’s holidays, my husband Roger and I discussed what we wanted the next part of our life to be like. He thought that before retiring, he would like to do one more airport project but only if he could find something very interesting. I half-jokingly agreed that would be fine but could he try for an exotic location? As usual, Roger came through and soon we were headed to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. This blog is a recap of our "leap-of- faith" wanderings around the Middle East and beyond. We joyfully share these expat experiences.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Travel to Turkey . . . TŰRKIYE ODYSSEY – PART 2 – Ìstanbul, the Alpha City

Our Türkiye odyssey continues as we travel from the tranquil rustic landscape of the mountains along the Aegean coast to the majestic but jarring urban bustle that is the alpha city of Ìstanbul.

Ìstanbul welcomes us with an overload of sensory experiences; glorious cool weather, obscene traffic jams, lots of hills, more obscene traffic jams, old men sitting at sidewalk cafes, still more obscene traffic jams, lots of bright young people, still more obscene traffic jams and the national drink of Turkey, “lion’s milk” also known as Raki, which relieves all the pain of the traffic jams.

A Raki toast to traffic jams!
We still find Ìstanbul bedazzling with its kinetic, frenzied atmosphere that is contagious from the moment you reach the city.

As the third largest metropolitan city in Europe, after London and Moscow, it is immense. It is the only city in the world that occupies two continents – Europe and Asia.  

Straddling the Bosphorus, a strait that divides Europe and Asia, this alpha city climbs up the hills that ring the city for as far as you can see. We are enthralled by it all. Well, except for the traffic!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Blogging Boomer Carnival #230

SoBabyBoomer is hosting this week's Blogging Boomer Carnival #230 and provides an excellent definition of what exactly it is. 

"There is so much stuff in the blog-o-sphere, just finding what interests you can be difficult.If there is a topic you are interested in, like what's happening with Baby Boomers today, following a blog carnival is a great way to learn what people are saying about that topic. . . 
. . . A blog carnival is like a special interest magazine.  It has a title, a topic that flows through its postings, editors, contributors, and an focused audience. Editions of the carnival typically come out on a regular basis, like every Monday. 

The Blogging Boomers Carnival is a collection of like-minded blogs cooperating to expose their best stories of interest to the Baby Boomer Generation To our knowledge, the Blogging Boomers Carnival is the only, the oldest and the best boomer-centric carnival. Read on and enjoy!!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Travel to Turkey - TÜRKIYE ODYSSEY . . . A Glimpse of the Land of Emperors, Sultans and one idyllic mountain-top inn

It was a dark and stormy night ... Just kidding!!!! It was a sun-shiny day in Dubai as we boarded our flydubai flight to Istanbul. We are holding true to our promise to travel the surrounding region while living in Dubai. Roger's long standing appreciation of The Crusades and the rise of the Ottoman Empire sends us on a 10-day trek through Tűrkiye.  
Katie & Roger with the Blue Mosque at sunset
Our trip begins in a charming, actually drop dead, breath-taking, boutique inn located above a small village in the mountains along the Aegean coast. 

For four days we explore the ancient sites in and around Ephesus. And while the sites are astounding, we often wish we booked a day to just stay and enjoy this little jewel of a hotel perched on the side of a hill.

From there we travel to the alpha city, Istanbul, whose grandeur and sheer size completely takes us by surprise. This is a city of never-ending grand palaces, eerie underground cisterns, luxurious harems, jaw-dropping churches and mosques and ancient history on every corner. Our only regret is we leave before even making a dent in visiting all its wonders. Just means we have a great excuse to return! 

Friday, October 14, 2011

Blogging Boomers Carnival #229

I am pleased to host the Blogging Boomer Carnival #229 this week which brings you an eclectic mix of  articles, advice and a sprinkling of adventure.

Praying for that empty nest? Be careful what you pray for. . . Why have so many Americans lost their cool? . . .   Do you know how much your cookbooks weight? A very weighty questions to ponder. . .  The most important things about mid-life weight loss. . .  A Turkiye Odyssey; Emperors, Sultans and one idyllic mountain-top inn . . Can you balance in your leisure activities? . . .Where to live in retirement? . . . Reminiscing about flying in the 60s.

The Empty Nest . . . I had it planned it all out. I had waited for it like a child waiting on Santa's gifts on Christmas Morning. The last one left the nest and I was finally alone and it wasn't all it was cracked up to beFinding Your Faith 

Friday, October 7, 2011

Blogging Boomers Carnival #228

Enjoy the posts! Boomers rule! 

Blogging Boomers Carnival #228 - Aging does not suck you just need to think about it in a different way! So what is lighting you up!!! To renovate or not - big decision for boomers! Can you be fashionable and socially conscious at the same time? Answer is YES! Read on. Listening skills are essential as are great restaurants in Paris. 

Books-for-BoomersSo Baby Boomer knows that boomers are aware that they are experiencing different types of life issues than the previous generation. With the oldest boomers now reaching retirement age, a new book explores a wide range of today’s boomer life challenges.

DOING MORE . . . Beshtar High-Fashion from Afghanistan found in Dubai

Note: This article was originally published in (second part).

Can one be socially conscious and fashionable at the same time?

If you are shopping at Beshtar, Livia Firth, the unofficial spokeswoman for socially conscious fashion, says you can.

Images of Afghanistan include haunting visions of women covered head to toe in blue fabric with only a small screen to peek through; scenes of a war ravaged countryside where homes and farmland are destroyed; and pictures of women and children whose eyes silently speak of terror and lost hope.  

Can anything of beauty come from such a country?

Talented American fashion designer Carole Laugier Naim sorts through these images to find beauty and hope in her designs made from traditional crafts and fabrics of her adopted Afghanistan.