Thursday, January 31, 2013

Money Pit:My Home

Two of the radiator panels in my home need to be replaced. They were not heating properly and it turned out that they are clogged and since they are old, they need  to be replaced. It is not a whole lot of money but still an expense is an expense.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Sitting Tight!

The Turkish Stock Exchange totally tanked. The Index dropped from 86,000s to 78,000s within a week. Many people are panicking and selling and as always, I am sitting tight, doing absolutely nothing. Actually, I am considering to buy some stocks.

A good portion of my retirement portfolio is made up of stocks, and I own some individual stocks. I never invest a penny that I will need to use in the short/mid-term in stock exchange. I only use money that I can forget about for at least 5 years so, my individual portfolio is rather small.

I sold some stocks when I was buying Apartment No 2 but other than that, I do not normally sell stocks.

Now, I need to go and calculate how much money I can spare to invest in the fallen Stock Exchange...

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Thanks for the prayers!

Thank you all who kept my sister in their prayers. She had the tumor removed on Friday. They said it was benign for the time being but those kind of tumors could become malignant and that it would be best to remove it. So, without any hesitation she had it removed. I hope, this will be the end of it.

Please do not ignore your yearly check-ups! I promise, I will not.


Monday, January 21, 2013

Please pray...

My sister went in for her annual check up and they found out that two of the breast cysts she had for a very long time have changed and her doctor ordered an immediate biopsy.

I am scared. Very scared. We will not know if she is OK or not until next Wednesday. Please do pray for her.

I think, I am beyond scared...

Sunday, January 20, 2013

How long can I use my snow tires?

My regular tires are gone. They were not so great to begin with and after their third season, it was time to part with them. My snow tires are also on their third season now and I am going to buy new snow tires this year as well. Although they may be in good condition, as I have been told, using them during a fourth season is not safe. I wonder if that is true...

I am thinking of using my snow tires until late May, may be June. Is that wise?

At one point, I should consult people who knows about cars and tires more than I do.

Anybody who has any idea on this?

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Lots of work this month...

I have already put in 6 days of work this month. Next week I will be working at least 2,5 days. May be two more days before the end of the month. This is a good month but it is also very tiring. Consulting is not like having a regular 9-5 job. Every single minute I work has to be productive.

I have not been feeling completely well lately. I had some low fever for a few days and that is gone now but I am left with a disturbing cough. Too much travel and too much work is not helping me get better but I guess I should not complain. There is no guarantee that there will be more work in the months to come so, while I have it, I should do my best.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Home... Sweet Home!

Finally I am back in Istanbul. What a relief...

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

How can this happen to me?

The first time I was on an airplane was in 1990. I flew from Ankara to New York. I enjoyed flying very much and flew the same route several times. I flew to the West Coast of US, to Taiwan, to Europe and within Turkey many times.

6 years ago, on a flight to Munich, we encountered some long lasting and uncomforatble turbulence and I became an uncomfortable flier. Although, I did not enjoy flying anymore, I flew many more times. recently the level of my discomfort has been on the rise. I don't know why. A month ago, I had a panick attack and could not fly to my destination. After that, I flew to Izmir and back last week. This week I flew to Izmir again but could not fly back today!!!!!!!!!!!! While landing to Izmir we had a short but severe turbulence and I freaked out. Today, I was supposed to go back but at the airport, as we were waiting to board the plane, they told us that the plane would be delayed due to TECHNICAL reasons.

What are those reasons? No one tells you that. It was to be delayed for 10 minutes and later that became a half hour. I was supposed to fly with a friend and despite his reassurances, I just could not make myself fly... If there weren't a delay due to those unknown technical reasons, I was going to fly but as we got delayed, I got more nervous every minute.

Now I am on a bus at night and it will probably take 8-9 hours to go back to Ankara. I know this is way more dangerous but...

What am I gonna do? If I cannot fly, my life is ruined. God help me...

Monday, January 7, 2013

Homesick...

I came to Ankara almost three weeks ago and I am homesick. I must go to Izmir to work at the Customer site tomorrow. I will be coming back to Ankara on Wednesday night.

I am planning to go back home to Istanbul on Friday but, there is a snow storm hitting Istanbul and mountains of snow is expected in many places around the country. I do not know what the road situation will be. I hope I can go back on Friday. If not we will have to wait for the weather to get better. I am sick of rotating the same clothes and sleeping in a bed that is not my own. I miss my home. Although, mom's home is as comfy as can be, I want to be at my own place.

Mom is coming with me so, it will be a little different than what I am used to but, we enjoy each other's company.

I left my family home at the age of 22 to go to New York and live there. I was hired by a multi-national joint venture and it was the first time I would be living on my own, the first time I would be abroad and even the first time I would be on an aircraft. It was an exciting time which taught me to shop for one instead of four, track and pay bills on time, manage my budget and run a home. I loved being on my own and I still do.

As I am writing this, it started to snow in Ankara as well. We'll see if I will be able to fly to Izmir tomorrow. It is tea time for mom and me so, we can enjoy our tea watching the snow...

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Broke the bank... a little...

I went to a new customer in İzmir Thursday morning and came back on Friday night. I will have to repeat the same trip Tuesday morning. The problem is I am still in Ankara and I have not brought clothes appropriate for work. Just a couple of turtlenecks and a basic pair of black pants.

I needed some new clothes for work for a long time but, I hate shopping full price so, I had postponed my shopping until today. There will be further discounts as we approach the spring but, I had to buy some basic pieces. I bought a pair of navy pants, a grey top, a dark red top and a grey and dark red cardigan to go with the top. All four cost about USD 170.- (308 TL) I know it is a lot but, when you are a consultant, the professional look is important. Besides, the pieces I bought are pretty good quality which means they will last a long time.

I am pretty tall for a Turkish woman (5'9") and my legs are very long so, finding a fitting pair of pants is difficult lengthwise.

I must also buy a pair of new black shoes during the sales period. I will do that when I go back home to Istanbul. I love the wingtip oxfords that I have but, they are getting worn out so, hopefully I will be able to get a new pair for next year.

During the last few years I was making do with turtlenecks from Land's End and LLBean with some sweaters. They were almost like uniforms but now due to what I do, I must look a lot sharper. Thank God it is not for every day of the week:) I can get away with a lot less.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

First Post of 2013

Here is another year... My grandma used to say: "I don't understand why people get so happy and celebrate when a new year comes along. It's just another year making us older and older..." May be it's true but, for me a new year is always a fresh, new start. Yes, we are getting old but that's only natural. What is important is to make the best of the time while we have it.

I will repeat my sister's post on Facebook:

Hope 2013 brings health, health and health! Please put in the effort for the rest yourselves....