The store was closed.
So Steve came on the bus to Ankara with us, and rode along the bumpy, bumpy road as it’s temporary, or unintentionally forever, owner regrets drinking that liter of water for about 75km, abandons Steve at the bus stop, and ran the fastest, spazziest dash her legs could carry her past forty bus terminals, through the 1 lira turnstile to the bathroom and slipped into her stall, the ground sopping wet as this was one of those deceiving “it’s just a porcelain hole in the ground” stalls.
Side note, you know those pink little hand buckets in every labor and delivery room of every maternity ward that are kept filled with ice for mommies? Same buckets sit as rinse buckets next to every porcelain hole in Turkey.
We check into our Ankara hotel. It’s 4:45. We have a flight to Bulgaria tomorrow. Steve is not getting on the flight if I can help it. We find the address to DHL (it can’t be THAT much to send it). The hours online tell us we have until six o’clock – a taxi is hailed. Steve is getting the heck out of Turkey. Our taxi driver talks to us. The entire time. Only in Turkish. Apparently no mime trick in the box was enough for us to say “we don’t know what you’re saying.”
“It is too late.” the man at the counter says. I panic. It’s 5:25, the internet, the DOOR says 6:00! (actually it says 18:00, but you get it). I think the panic is starting to show. He says wait. Explains in Turkish something to a woman on the phone, hands the phone to me. I explain my predicament. I don’t care that the van left for the airport, I just want it taken from me, it can stay in Turkey for days more! Take it home and play it for your family, I will marry your firstborn if you think I’m a catch and you’ll just take the damn saz.
I think I was in more control than that. I hope.
And next thing you know, Steve is mummified. That boy is making it to the United States. Success.
“That will be 911.”
“911 Turkish Lira.”
No, no, that’s impossible, I… I can’t. I can’t, I mean I just can’t do that, I lied on my claims form but not by much when I said it was worth 75TL.
“Can you send it… Slower? Anyway slower, it can take a month, walk it there. I… Can’t.”
Mummified Steve sits in our hotel room. He is coming to Bulgaria. He may get abandoned at a Bulgarian orphanage, the epitome of “it’s the thought that counts.”
And that’s where we’re at.
(Steve is mentioned in every post through September. Read the next Steve-focused story here)