Doğal Yaşam Parkı

On Wednesday the six of us headed out for a field trip.  We rode the ferribot across to "the other side".  That is the literal translation of the city, Karşıyaka.  The Things were ecstatic.  We practiced our Turkish, drove the family van onto the boat and took our seats on the top level.  We enjoyed the view as we ate our simit and drank our çay while crossing the bay.  The above title is the name of our destination.  Translated it means Natural Life Animal Park.  Or zoo for all intents and purposes. 

We paid our 7 TYL, roughly $4 US dollars and headed in, not quite sure what to expect.  To our delight it was fantastic.  The animals seemed to be well looked after, the grounds were beautifully maintained and despite the mosquitos we experienced a show at each exhibit.  The lions were close enough to touch.  Interesting side note for you C.S. Lewis fans, lion in Turkish is "Aslan".  Sound familar?  There were peacocks and brown giraffes, zebras, gazelles, and yes even a guinea pig and squirrel exhibit.  Separate of course and something that gave us all a chuckle! 

Although we were not able to travel the entire acreage Thing 1 managed to capture the above photos of what we did see.

 And just a funny side story.  As we were trekking along, a family on the same path overheard our conversation in English and stopped to ask the Things where they were from, in English.  The Things all replied that we are Americans but that we are currently living here in Turkey.  The conversation continued and I said hello and when I told the mom that we were residing in, "Urla", she had no clue what I was saying.  After three attempts Thing 4 walks up and says, "Urla" and she says, "Ahh".  And that was that.  I was confident that I had pronounced Urla the same way that Thing 4 had, apparently not.  On the way home Husband Jared and all the Things gave me a language lesson.  Go figure.

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