Archive | January, 2011

Ain’t no party like a Çukurcuma party.

30 Jan

It has been a dream of mine for a while. I don’t know where it stemmed from; My love for gozleme? My love for cushions? My love for belly dancing (I’ve been told I’m pretty good at belly dancing-Ok, fine…. admittedly, a year ago, my 70 year old neighbor called my house suggesting I “close [your] curtains the whole neighbourhood can you’re you dancing”. Yes, I was practicing my body-rolls. Yes, I was half naked. Yes, I am still mortified. But no, I have not stopped my post-shower, half naked belly dancing practice.

Apologies for the diversion . Forget travelling. Forget meeting the parents. The ultimate ‘make or break’ relationship tester = hosting a Çukurcuma party. What is Çukurcuma? I still have no idea. Admittedly, we did a sneaky ‘GCCP job’ (Google, cut, copy and paste) from a Turkish blog. The details of the party were not disclosed. Guests only had 2 directions; 1. Arrive by 8:00pm. 2. Do not drive. In a desperate attempt to conceal our ignorance, yet maintain an air of ambiguity, we were forced to quickly quell questions regarding the meaning of this obscure word; Çukurcuma . Jai hinted that it involved a Turkish interpretive drumming circle, I suggested it referred to a Turkish circumcision ceremony (in my defence this suggestion was made after a couple of ‘ciders’). Either way no one knew what Çukurcuma actually was. Including us. (Note: I have no intention of offending anyone – if you are Turkish, please hit me back with the meaning?!) The dream, the vision, the reverie which remained a figment of my imagination for so many years, began to evolve and transform into reality.

Preparation: Listology.

– Bunnings: Mission – to create a low table. – Note; to the ‘helper’ at Bunnings, who pretended that I could only buy bricks by the pallet. Not funny. The fact that I was actually contemplating doing so = dedication to the Çukurcuma (although, I did contemplate how I could use the rest of the 500 bricks to build a small granny flat in my back garden) Driving with 2 huge planks of wood and multiple bricks in your car….not safe.

– Mattresses & assortment of Indian blankets (pronounced Ardwanoos) : Mission- to build a Turkish tent Accomplished: Great hammering skills (Jai) & outstanding directional skills (me) = sensational Turkish tent. We used everything from bed mattresses to yoga mats. The ground was as soft as my grandmother’s bosom (my sister inherited her DD’s) Turkish Cuisine: Mission to cook eatible food for 30+ people. – I had all intentions to create hommous & falafels from scratch. To my dismay, time ran short. I would have to outsource.

– Felafels are not Turkish. I repeat falafels are not from Turkey. I thought I was going to get punched in the face by the Kebab-man at Hornsby Kebab shop when I told him that the falafels were for my Turkish dinner. I apologized profusely, extending the party to be ‘Middle Eastern’ in fear that he would not give me my falafels, I invited him and his ‘bros’ to the party. As much as I love making new friends (especially ones that can cook falafel kebabs), I was relieved when he declined.

Menu (Middle Eastern):

– Spinach, Fetta & Ricotta Puff Pastry.

– Spice Lamb Mince Turkish Pide Pizza’s

– Spiced Chicken Skewers

– Cheese & Sweet Chilli Scrolls – Felafel Rolls (tabouli, hummus and felafels)

– Turkish Delight Rocky Road


– Jai Jai juice (a repeat…it is not a sexual innuendo – Although excessive consumption by a few members of the party, did lead to a few sneaky pashes) – Ultimate Curk-Curk shots (still have no clue what was in these- the taste immediately took me on a n imaginative journey to Turkey) The Party: Release you inner Çukurcuma. – Filling up the water cooler with a punch – brought a whole new meaning to ‘on tap’. – The shot tray accompanied by a sign ‘please take one’ was strategically positioned outside the bathroom. Most guests, interpreted this as a rule, not a suggestion and many overlooked the ‘one’ by downing multiple shots at a time. Two words – Social lubricant.

– Sheeshas – Completed the Turkish tent. Highlight- watching my sisters friend ‘smoking’ the sheesha for 10 minutes, claiming how ‘high’ he was. No one had the guts to tell him it was not alight.

– Turkish/Middle Eastern Feast: All that was left were a few falafel crumbs & food-comatised guests. Shout out to the Turkish Delight Rocky Road. I have had recurring food dreams about this all week.

– Dancing: We bounced on mattresses and off the walls until early morning. 10 minute power naps on mattress- followed by 20 minute dance sessions. And Repeat. Aftermath: Headaches, Heat and Hysteria.

– Deconstruction of the Turkish tent in 40 degree heat and with a thumping headache was not enjoyable. – Sanitising the water cooler, to eradicate all signs of alcohol in 40 degree heat was not enjoyable (sorry mum & dad – no, it didn’t get ‘mossy’, it just seemed like a good idea at the time)

– Hosing down Jai Jai juice from the pavement (and off my dogs fur) in 40 degree heat not enjoyable.

My own definition of Çukurcuma: A Turkish-themed party (by a non-turk) executed with much exuberance and merriment.

Mission Accomplished.


Sneaker Freaker.

10 Jan

I still can’t believe I missed the signs…

1.            Staring at the ground when walking (I mistook this for nervousness)

2.            Jumping over puddles or avoiding rough surfaces (I mistook this for playfulness)

3.            Arranging to meet for dates outside ‘Hype’ shoe store.

4.              His first pick up line; ‘You have a beautiful sole’ followed by an SMS ‘Nix, meet me at the mall- just for kicks’

It took me at least 4 months before i realised…..

Yes, I was dating a Sneaker Freaker (SF)

This is not a mere ‘Carrie Bradshaw’ obsession. It is an addiction. It is a disease.

Some of the symptoms include;

1. Continually craving for the smell of patent leather (the equivalent of a new car smell)

2. Buying doubles of a pair (in case one gets ‘lost/eaten by the dog/or worn by the 12 year old kid next door’)

3. Sacrificing sleep, to ensure prime positioning an online queue for the purchase of the latest kicks from USA.

My SF, can pick a dud or fake in his sleep…four Adidas stripes instead of three, Nike spelt with 2 ‘e’s, unstraight stitching, if the toe can flip back to touch the tongue…

Things I have learnt from my Sneaker Freaker:

– The ultimate high point for a Sneaker Freaker is ‘The Nod’ (when a stranger  on the street glances at your sneakers and continues to gives you the nod of approval).

– Painting prints are not the things that come in sets (ie. 1 of 25). As my SF bragged about his ice-cream converse sneakers being 1 of 1000 in the world.

– Sneakers should never be described as ‘interesting, cool or colourful’ instead they are ‘fresh’.

I guess I should not complain… his addiction could be worse, porcelain dolls, star wars figurines (I don like sci-fi) or delicate flower-pressing…