Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Money with Sand

Early in the morning, I wake up and sit on my PC to write a story from my past list. I have a long list of stories. I take a small note for each future story, in order to write it later. During day time, I make some draft variations of the chosen story. These stories are from my past experience, sometimes a travel, some event description, something worth telling to my colleagues, to my wife, to my kids while driving them school. These are my little reasons for more communication.
That draft story lies on my screen, in word format for a few days. My local colleagues read and tell me their impressions when we meet. I know that I should rewrite some of my stories. One of them is Kilimanjaro fever. I am not comfortable with the structure I drafted for the story. I do not know how to rewrite.

I am not so sure how good about my story in Moscow about an old lady, since I got no response, no feedback. Good or bad, if you receive a pesponse, that means good. Maybe I should rewrite it.

One day when these short stories will hopefully reach to 100 in number and I will try to bring them as a book. Earlier I tried to write a novel. It is impossible for me. It is another talent. I am a simple storyteller, a simple narrator, nothing more.

I have one other story for you this time. As usual this is a true story of mine. I had various drafts on my mind. I told the story a number of times when I was with my school friends. Once I told the same story in my local Toastmasters meeting. I tried to create a number of different versions. Until now it is all told but not written. This is my first try. I hope that you will like it. If you do not like the way I tell the story please do let me know so that I try another draft.

In late 90s in Ankara. I applied for early retirement. In our procedures, if you start early and if you pay enough premiums for your old age pension, then you can deserve to get your retirement at relatively early age, you receive a monthly salary and still continue to work for another salary.

You remember the park scene at the end of the old Movie "It is a mad mad mad world" where the actors try to collect money which was blown out in open air, breeze takes all money. Films are usually based on true stories. I could never imagine that the same money blown in the air would be my experience one day.

On the specific day, I got my new ATM card and went to the nearest public bank ATM machine to collect my money. I had valet on my left hand, my ATM card on my right. I put the card in get the salary out, all clean new 22 each 10 bucks. Money bunch was on my right hand together with my ATM card. I tried to put ATM card into my valet. Money lot released from my hand into soft breeze. Lots of money all around me, on the air, all released my money. I was helpless. My money was free to go in the soft wind.

I was really terrified. My monthly salary was about to go with the wind. I was about to loose all of them and wind would take all of them and probably will disappear soon.

Fortunately street was empty, not much people was around. Car drivers were cleaning their company cars, and street was covered with that dirty wash water. Money fell down on that dirty water. I collected them all. They were wet, and covered with sandy dirt.

Anyhow I took them all to my office, put them on radiator. They were dry a few hours later. I took them to another bank, where my private bank account is located. I asked the lady in charge to put the money into my bank account.

She could not operate the counting machine, since it could not be operated. She couldn't understand whey machine stopped. She counted my money by hand.
She said unbelievingly, "How interesting that money was covered with sand?".

I told this story first to my school colleagues. They laughed a lot. My contractor friend said he would never had that experience, since he would never let anyone any machine to take his money. My public director friend would not need same experience since he would have someone to do this job on his behalf. My banker friend does not bother to collect money, since he has lots of them.

Now I have a procedure while collecting money from ATM machine. First I collect the incoming money and immediately put them into my pocket. Then I collect my ATM card and place into my valet, and valet into my pocket. Now it is time to count money if that is correct.

Once one of them said, "Haluk, why do all these strange things happen to you?" I do not know. Maybe that is a special warning that is why I should write them down.

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