Wednesday, October 10, 2012


Nope, I’m not going to write about the A.S. Byatt novel or a remake of The Exorcist . I want to write about things. When I left New York I gave away all of my possessions except for a box of books, a suitcase filled with shoes and two Rubbermaid containers of clothes and art and some writing I wanted to keep. It was one of the most liberating things I have ever done. I had too much stuff. In New York you would never have convinced me of it, I had too little space I would have argued. And while apartment space is smaller in New York I had a whole lot of sh*t.

So now that I have my own space in İstanbul I am really careful. I don’t believe I should only have 100 possessions, but everything I buy is something I really need or will make me very happy using. I still have a problem with paper products (I like them and they make me feel like there is a world of writing possibility out there that I can now tap into because I have the right notebook. Right notebook = right genius book in the world of my imagining.)

In any case, here are my ‘can’t-live-without-them’ 5 possessions.

1. and 2. My salt shakers. Yes, I have two.

1. I bought this red one first. It’s perfect for salting the water for pasta, but a disaster when trying to salt food. I love its big, beautiful salt shaker shape, the color of the red cap and cover and how it looks when it is filled with salt. I had to buy the second one because no matter how lightly I tapped this one too much salt ended up on my food.

2. This is not the salt shaker I intended to buy. It was the only one I could buy singly and it was cheap (1.50TL, about 80 cents U.S.) I had wanted to buy a squarer, fatter one – kind of like the ones you find in American diners – but I am so glad I found this one. I love the way it fits in my hand. I love how elegant it is. I call this my Madame X salt shaker. It reminds me of this painting by John Singer Sargent.

When I put my salt shakers together it kind of looks like the Haiga Sofia, don’t you think?

3. Rosewater – and not just any rosewater, but vor-mag energy-enriched rosewater. Rosewater is known as the beauty secret of Turkish women. I use it as part of one of my daily rituals. I love the scent and the lovely and loving energy it awakens in me.

4. Alligator stapler – This is just the perfect stapler. It’s the perfect size. It’s whimsical (it’s an alligator – or, if I am mistaken, then a crocodile) and it makes me happy just to look at it. Collate and staple, people, collate and staple.

5. Oh, this was a hard one, but hands down this is my most important possession. Moka express. One cup. Every morning. Love. Happiness. Espresso. Every day is a happy one.

What are your most important possessions?

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