Home is where the Mississippi River is

First of all, I’d like to wish a Happy Bayram and Eid to all my friends! As for me, I am spending my vacation at home in Wisconsin where I am eating all my favorite foods, catching up with friends and family, and being a Maid of Honor for my best friend Lindsey’s wedding (counting down the days ’til her Big Day!)

I’ve already traversed (and eaten my way through) what feels like the entire Upper Midwest. I started in Chicago and headed straight to Wautoma for some much-need cottage time. The weekend saw me in Milwaukee, back in Chicago for bachelorette partying, and a short stop-over in Kenosha for Taste of Wisconsin. Just yesterday I have arrived in La Crosse, the land of the mighty Mississippi and also, the place where I grew up. A journey home would not be complete without a day trip to Trempealeau for local Elmaro wine and scenic views so that’s also on the schedule.  La Crosse and Trempealeau are both in in the Driftless Area which means the glaciers failed to flatten the river valley’s beauty. It’s not uncommon to hear the area referred to as God’s Country because the landscape is just that breathtaking.

It’s been and continues to be a fun-filled trip where I’ve been fielding all the questions that newly engaged couples get and wishing that Gurkan was along for the ride. Vacation has been mostly full of eating but also a good deal of skiing, sailing, canoeing, playing with my Emery dog, reading Hemingway, stocking up on hard-to-find goods in Istanbul, and deciding that when I return, my goal is to start a vertical vegetable garden on my small Dikilitas balcony. I’ve been doing my research and with a little bit of help, I think it may just be possible!

If you’re wondering what Wisconsin is like, here’s a teaser. Locals know it’s downright beautiful and the food is probably the best in the States if you like cheese, meat, and well, beer. When I move back to the US permanently, you’ll know where to find me.

silver lake2

Silver Lake, Wautoma, WI

silver lake

Silver Lake, Wautoma, WI


Emery dog gazing into the sunset, Wautoma, WI


Evening sail with my dad on Silver Lake, Wautoma, WI

la crosse

Evening on the Mississippi River, La Crosse, WI


Feelings of home, sidewalk poetry, La Crosse, WI