I'm back

Well it's been a rough couple days without the internet and knowing how few Turkey pictures are left to be posted. I'll get on to that as soon as possible. Sadly, that will end our adventures from 2006 but I'm sure there will be some wee adventures to post on as the year continues. I thought I would just add this adorable picture of my nephew, Max, heading up the stairs to his first day at Preschool. I would also like to note his NorthFace backpack...I mean what 3 year-old has one of those unless your dad is a gear junky/merchandiser. My brother Nate said and I quote because he's funny,

Notice that the pack is The North Face. Max does not deal in crap gear
like that little flower pack on the girl in the picture. What if he had to leave
preschool and go straight to Nepal? How is her pack going to stand up to
that kind of travel? ;)

Max was born the day before I graduated from Uni in June 2003 and right before I came to NZ the first time... so Mike and I can track our relationship length but Max's birthday...if we can remember how old he is. Just wanted to feature Maxfield James Larson today because even though he doesn't know me very well I think he is brilliant and very cool and I can't wait to hang out one day.


McKay's Indian Wedding

Last week my sister-in-law, McKay, attended the wedding of her close friend, Bella. She took part in all the events that were part of this several day Indian wedding. I loved the colors and textures so much, I wanted to post here as I've never been to an Indian wedding but wanted one myself. It was just too hard getting Indian things in New Mexico. Congratulations Bella. You looked gorgeous.
The day before her wedding her hands and feet were painted in Henna, called 'Mehndi' Just look at thos fingers.
Bella's hands. Again...gorgeous. I love this. Delicate and intricate and beautiful.
Bella's feet with peacocks on each. The woman spent something like 5 hours painting Bella. I believe it. How special and exciting to have this as part of your wedding preparations. Western world has got it all funky...white dresses??? We need some color baby and feet painting.
These were McKay's hands after being painted. The longer the you leave the Henna on, the darker the color will be. She wrapped her hands in tissue when she slept for maximum color. They are still pretty golden a week later. The intricacy of the design is goregeos and the way the design trickles down the fingers. Yum. I want my body to be henned or at least I want to replicate these designs in my life.

This was just after Bella had been smeared with a
yellow paste by all the women. It's called 'Haldi' and is meant to be good for your complexion...all in preparation for the next day's ceremoney. I love the colors...love them!
McKay looking gorgeous in her wedding attire...showing off her henna hands. Gorgeous! Love it.
Cool movement shot of the women dancing the night before the wedding. Colors!

Kickin it.

I was so close to finished the Turkey pictures...only 60 or so more to go but our computer has decided that it needs a break and sadly all my photos are on it. So to be continued...I was so excited to have all my travel photos posted but alas I don't so I think I will have to post some cool photos from some of my other friends' travels.

Anyone seen "Snakes on a Plane"? I hear it's become a cult following. I saw the first episode of the new season of Prison Break. Looks like it will be a Fugitive thing the whole way but I'm just glad there is some new scenery.

I am getting very excited to start my study of graphic design and spend my spare time cruising around the net looking at cool designers and their blogs and thinking about what I will be able to do, all the while feeling totally over my head and seriously beginner. But I get over those feelings and realize how much fun it's going to be to know how to do all this stuff instead of tinkering around for hours trying to sort it out.

Happy Weekend.
Madeline Marie, the newest addition to the Larson family thanks to Chelle and Brig. Just born weeks ago but already so cute. Love the colors. If you surround a child with this from their birth, they are destined to have flair!
This is Anders, my nephew, sleeping with Brig's (my bro) baseball mit on. Funny kid.


Next Stop: Pigeon Valley

Next we stopped by to see Pigeon Valley. This isn't a great photo but all through this Valley they would carve holes for pigeons to perch in. They would so this so that they could collect the pigeon feces to use for fertilizer and more importantly, for the paintings/frescoes in the cave hurches.

At the viewing spot, there was this sign and a table that was covered with a blanket. Of course, we wanted to see what was under the blanket and it was a table top full of nuts and dried fruit. Very clever.

I loved these 'evil eyes' that were everywhere...most people have one hanging somewhere in their house or work to ward of ghosts... Here is an explanation of what they are. Next time I go, I am going to get enough so I can have an evil eye tree like this one. Posted by Picasa

Love Valley...what do you think?

We concluded our day's tour at Love Valley to see the Fairy Chimney Rock formations. Yes, I know what you are thinking and Yes, I would agree. Just like the other valleys we'd walked through, this one was completely...uh...unique and quite impressive. This area is gorgeous. I could spend much more time just wandering all the valleys it has to offer.

Parts of Episode IV of Star Wars was filmed out these ways.

Wow, that was one full on day. I don't think we could have really packed any more in. I was very glad we took the tour seeing as how it got us to all the places we wanted to see in one day without any hassle...sort of like the first tier of things to see and there are 10 more...another day. Plus, we had great company, a great tour leader, and a nice van to sit in.

Such peculiar rocks. Posted by Picasa


Some Goreme sights

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Goreme Restaurant...great food.

So as we were eating our amazing falafel, the citar man started to play and the other guy got on the spoons. I could see Nathan (a guy we met moments before, American) eyeing them up. He saw a violin sitting beside the Citar man and went up and asked if he could play. They gave it to him and proceeded to try and tune it...obviously trained. At first when he started to play it sounded well, a little off, but soon enough he was jamming right along with them and it sounded great.

He sure had a lot of balls to get up and start playing, especially when he later told us that it had been tuned backwards or something like that and he had to play in an entirely new way...sounded complicated when he told us. Good on ya Nathan. We'd meet back up with Nathan and Becca in Olympos.
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Cool decor, old citar player, who could ask for anything more?
Goreme Restaurant

Micah, Brent, Anthony, Me, and Becca at Goreme Restaurant. I swear the falafel ( I know it's not turkish) and hummus was made for the Gods. Such good falafel. Posted by Picasa

Last day in Cappadocia

We headed 2km up from the village to The Goreme Open Air Museum which is one of Turkey's World Heritage Sites. It's a cluster of rock carved Byzantine churches, chapels, and monestaries.

The Christians began clustering in Cappadocia at the end of the 2nd century.

Christianity grew in the 3rd and 4th centuries.

They left their mark in these amazing rock churches. Posted by Picasa


Karanlik Kilise

The church was covered from ceiling to floor with frescoes depicting Christ's life. Sadly, we didn't have a tripod to get better photos but it was such an experience to get up close to the paintings and not only see it as a church but also as a step in art history and the progression of perspecitive, line, and painting. Very glad we paid the extra lira to go in. Posted by Picasa

More. Beautfiul. so oooold. Posted by Picasa

Walking back

After we finished at the Museum, it was only mid-day and our bus wasn't leaving until 9PM but we were so tired. It's a beautiful area and due to it's almost supernatural look, there is a UFO museum and next to that we saw a sign that read, "Horeback Riding"...hee hee. Posted by Picasa

Travel friends goodbye

After the Open Air Museum, we were beat and just hung out in the hostel all afternoon reading and chatting to people. We met some great people in our few days here. Brent and Micah were so much fun and we had some good chats about Turquoise and they got me very excited to visit India one day. As did Chris and Lisa who were on the last few weeks of their 10 month world trip. All those pictured are Canadian.
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So Long Shoe Sting...and Cappadocia

After lounging about all the rest of the day and chatting to our new travel friends... we headed to the bus station for our 9PM bus to Antalya...10 hour trip. We met a woman who was on her 2 week relief from working for Unicef in Darfur. We spoke to her a little about this and how frustrating it has been to get anything done. Honestly, we met so many people in Cappadocia.

A view of the ShoeString from it's roof. Great lil place.

A view of Goreme village from a top the roof. They were building a pool that should be done now. If it had been done, we would have stuck around another couple days. Those are my birthday sunglasses that I got especially for Turkey. They got squashed when were in Oludeniz. I would wear these same clothes for a couple days as we travled by bus and then took the day to Termossos and then found our way to Olympos.Stinky stinky but so much fun. Posted by Picasa