Tradvil meeting November 6 -10 Trugutlu, Turkey

Betty Abugheida


Charles Tchato and Betty Abugheida attended but stayed in Izmir while part of the participants went to Epheses to see the Virgin Mary's birthplace and other biblical sites on November 7.  Actually it would have been impossible for us to do this as our trip from Paris to Izmir took 13 hours and we arrived there at eight in the evening with the last bus to Turgutlu leaving at eight forty five and the station being on the other side of Izmir. We took the afternoon bus for a one hour ride to Turgutlu.

We did not meet up with the returning group and latecomers until breakfast on the 8th.


The first session included presentations by each country most of which were power point and photos of traditional dress, housing and food.

Lithuania had three learners demonstrate the poppy seed milk that they made to go with spiced bread like cookies at Christmas festivities on Christmas eve served after twelve traditional foods  followed by predictions for the future.

No one seemed able to pull up or in the case of Romania was unwilling to help me retrieve the photos of the Edith Piaf  event.  So I asked for a flipchart and drew a map of Paris and illustrated how it grew like an escargot with circles of walls and absorption of traditional villages of which one was Belleville comprised of portions of four arrondisements.  They seemed to like this approach and one person even said that it was a relief from power point presentations!


During the afternoon session Mariella from Italy said that France had not sent her photos to organize as noted in the minutes from Lithuania.  No one seemed to be able to find these photos although I know Mark sent them to Lithuania and Estonia.  We should resend them asap to Italy.


They insisted that everyone do something about food and traditional costumes which I noted would be hard for us unless we do street sweepers or wine merchants in overalls.  Food we can do easily by taking baguettes or other traditional breads to the street fair in Spain.


We will need to take photos of our planned tour sites in Belleville and perhaps can use those of the Bellevilloise or the entrance to the Java to illustrate traditional architecture.


We also need info about a workshop for the website under the title this is my village and these are our customs which Eero has created.


The deadline for this material is the end of November!


We are to stick with the decisions made in Lithuania and make our presentations simple and short.  


Another heading will be the European village and customs or traditions in europe.


We then went through the table of deliverables which we are to address one by one. 


Traditional villages as tourist attractions should be submitted by November 30 to or


Silva in Lithuania is to gather info on housing, foods, household objects by the end of November


We can take these objects to Spain for the street fair at the February meeting. We are to write short sentences that go with each photo.  We can also bring costumes to this event.


Things then degenerated with Eero chairing the meeting and dividing up the responsibilities.  It was impossible to follow this and Eero is to write up all the deliverables and who is to do what. We will just have to wait for his treatise.


Charles took pictures of these meetings


The best date for the visit to Paris is April 3 - 6 although several countries preferred later April when the weather might be better if possible. Cyprus will try to find an agreeable date for June instead of July because of the summer heat - decision to be final at meeting in Spain.


Spain confirmed for February 20 - 23 Site between Madrid and Barcelona;  suggest traveling to Madrid and then continue by bus or train although car is best.  Car takes two hours and avoids Madrid, for bus you have to go into Madrid and takes 3 hours - train is faster but expensive (about 70 euros) taking an hour and 15 minutes. Driving from Barcelona more expensive because of tolls - Saragosa close and Valencia about 100 km Alicanté also a possibility. Cultural tourism brochure prepared for this meeting with Poland making the outline by January 15th Vision of one brochure for all.


Discuss resources for employment in these fields at meeting in Spain.

Start the writing of the final report in Spain. Review in Paris and finish in Cyprus.


Bring products and announcements to media and other organizations to Cyprus. Quarterly newsletter to go on website with lists of participants and photos of what happened in the workshops. Keep records of all your events and activities and document with photos. Spain concerned about dissemination of final info as their agency reviews this carefully.


Eero is to do the minutes helped by Sebnem.


Second day

The Mayor of Turgutlu invited us to lunch at one of the educational centers.

After this we toured two other centers where adults we doing traditional embroidery, sewing projects, caligraphy, making decorative silk flower plaques and the most interesting, making colorful traditional prints on paper using colors floating on water.


Then we walked to a traditional shoemaker with a tiny shop.  He was 78.


Everywhere we went people asked for pictures sometimes with me but always with Charles who they seemed to be fascinated with and who played along with them smilingly.


We had a lovely dinner with modern live music at the hotel restaurant on the seventh floor.  I forgot to mention that the palm city hotel was just across the intersection from the bus stop which was just on the side of the road.  Luckily the bus driver realized that we were in difficulty and called a taxi for us.  The hotel was less than a block away but we could not see it from where the bus let us off so this proved a good laugh.


The next day we took an arranged van to the village eleven kilometers from Turgutlu but right up the mountain on a steep switchback road.

We were welcomed by about 50 or more villagers.  The population of this village being about 250 Or 65 families with an average of two or three children per family.  They have an elementary school but no health care facilities so have to to to Turgutlu for that and for any additional education.

We were welcomed by the mayor who is elected for five years.

Five women demonstrated the making of traditional flatbread on convex metal over fires.  They worked sitting on the ground rolling dough to paper thin consistency then filling it with a little green spinach like chopped mixture with crumbled feta cheese, folding it and baking it again.  This was served to us on long tables with the remainder of the villagers eating on their chairs.  They also served wheat cooked in milk, salty diluted yogurt to drink, fried bread, another kind of thicker bread and extra feta cheese.

The Imam invoked a blessing.

then the folk dancers, 4 girls and 4 boys came from Turgutlu to demonstrate traditional dances.  The men wore full black pants and a large silklike belt and yellow shirts, the women purple striped shirts and fancy blouses and traditional head dress with lots of silver like in Syria and Jerusalem.  We wanted to return a bit early to finish shopping in Izmir so rode back with the dance troup singing and trying to do belly dancing as the van swayed around the hairpin turns.  A good time was had by all.

I forgot to say that upon entering the village the tent set up for exhibit looked very bedouin and I asked about it.  Sebnem said no but later the town historian said the people there had come from central asia and wer nomadic so perhaps they replaced the black tenting with goat hair instead of camel which the bedouins use because the structure and the decor in the interior was the same.