Our final day we took a horse ride through Rose Valley in Cappadocia. Our two youngest had not gotten to do it before, as they were too small. We had several different options for the day and put it up for a vote. It was interesting to me that everyone voted for the activity that the entire family would do together. It seemed a fitting way to end our time. I didn't get too many pictures because believe it or not, managing iPhone pictures while riding a horse was tricky.
The first thing we had to do is greet this beautiful Anatolian Shepherd, locally known as a kangal. These dogs are enormous and enormously talented at shepherding the sheep in Turkey. She was only 15 months old, not fully grown, but could easily pull up to reach my shoulders. She was so happy to join us in our horseback ride, hopeful to keep the horses in line and to chase off stray dogs. She did both by the end.
We saddled up, each on our own horse. Big Ben was especially happy to get to ride his own horse for the first time ever.
That night we had our one last meal at our favorite place. One last hot from from fire oven bread with authentic Turkish spices to dip it in with the olive oil. One last stroll through the town. I just wanted to cherish every moment. Firstborn bought a few Turkish rug pillow cases to take to her dorm room. Miss Middler was with us. When we got back at bedtime, CC told us to go check on Sweet Cheeks in the bathroom. We wondered at why in the world we needed to check on Sweet Cheeks in the bathroom, but we obliged. That rascal, CC, had picked up our little street kitten, which we were now calling "Cappy," for Cappadocia, and brought her to our cave hotel. He shyly admitted he was worried we might not find her on our way out of town the next morning. He said, "It's the paws. They get me every time."
I strongly suspected she had parasites, so I had the kids hold her on a blanket and do lots of hand washing. Poor kitty needed a visit to the vet. Poor kitty needed children to love her, a bowl of food each morning, and a warm place to sleep. She would be going home with us to get it all!
The smile says it all. We weren't planning to get a kitty for awhile, maybe after summer, but Cappy just seemed like she needed to be a Campbell. She was so affectionate with us and not as much to the other passers-by. Her little squeak meow seemed to be saying, "I need you. You need me."
CC made her a litter box with some sand and a used food box. She knew right what to do. Then she curled up in this little end table for the night....at least until 4AM when she started crying for us to come visit her.
I heard her 4AM cries, and thought of my own children's cries when they were little. I thought of my kids, growing and grown. And I thought maybe I could manage one more 4AM cuddle to calm her down. Yes, she would be a Campbell kitty. (Insert purring sound here.)