These photos — azure waves and alluring soft sand — have sat trapped on my computer for a year. Interest in travel to the country pictured has plummeted as stability there was shaken. Thus, the challenge: Can you even match the happy scenes here with a place repeatedly screamed about in the news?
Yes, Turkey is the country in which I took these photos — Ladies’ Beach in Kusadasi, just across the water from Greece, to be exact — not the classic Caribbean Curacao beaches that you might have guessed it was. What’s so striking, browsing the 9 previous articles about my 2015 Turkey trip, is how drastically the international narrative about the country has soured over the course of mere months.
I wonder about the variety of emotions right now among the 75 million people living in Turkey. How many souls are heartbroken to be lost in a swell of negativity, when there is still so much good around — from the Blue Mosque to Ephesus, Turkey?
In 2013 when the bombs exploded at the Boston Marathon just blocks from our apartment, that tragedy was all the media focused on for months regarding our beloved city. But I remember walking through Boston the week after the Marathon, gazing up at the sun-dappled pink flowers in the Boston Public Garden.
I heard TV vans zoom past, cameras pointed towards the sadness down the street, and all I could think was, “That sadness isn’t the only thing in this city. So much else is still going on. Don’t forget the beauty here!”
And thus I give you these seven photos of a happy beach in Turkey. We see your beauty, Turkey. I think of you often, and send love and positive energy!
I’m curious to hear from you, readers: Which places that you’ve traveled to or lived in contrast in some way with the media’s predominant narrative about them? Please do share.
The author, Lillie Marshall, is a 6-foot-tall National Board Certified Teacher of English, fitness fan, and mother of two who has been a public school educator since 2003. She launched Around the World “L” Travel and Life Blog in 2009, and over 4.2 million readers have now visited this site. Lillie also runs TeachingTraveling.com and DrawingsOf.com. Subscribe to her monthly newsletter, and follow @WorldLillie on social media!