TE16 Turkish Delight

The Adventures of Misfit Defne Kman: Earth with us for years. I’ll pour you some tea. Then I’ll get out of your way and leave you two alone.” Did she say ‘my girl’? Yes of course, well she’s my stepmother after all. Don’t be ridiculous Defne what else can she say? ‘You’ve been livingwithus for years’? She didn’t say it ina fed-up sort of way but... Isn’t it clear fromGülistan’s eyes, her dress or nightdress, whatever it is, her unvarnished nails, her bare feet, the straightforwardness in her voice? There are no secrets in this house, no skeletons in the cupboard. That’s why the sense of peace and simplicity in this house is palpable as soon as you come in the door; these walls have never been battered by angry, agitated, pointed, mocking words. “I’ll have a tea,” said Defne placidly. This home and this woman had soothed her. The tension she had felt when she came in had subsided and she had begun to return to the real world. Maybe that was why she agreed to have a cup of strong black tea in this heat and at this hour. “Gülistan started an association for autistic children in Çorum. She’s beenworking there foryears. Nowtheassociationhas turned into an NGO to raise awareness and serve as a model to other cities about living with autism,” explained her father proudly. Gülistan means rose garden. Like the one her father planted with his own hands in the garden of the old house in Kalamış, the one Umay Bayülgen still looked after, saying ‘this is your father’s rose garden’, the one from where she’d sent the seedlings for


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