Riyad the Frenchman shared my tent with me on my first night at Nemrut Lake. He was also traveling alone in Turkey.
Turkish culture was one in which people always wanted to be with family and friends. As a result, people didn't really understand solo travelers. Riyad and I discussed how we were constantly being asked, even though it was obvious we were alone, whether we were alone. Turks asked us this, in at least four different ways:
"Arkadas var ma?"
The phrase, "Sen tek?" (Are you alone?) began to feel like a pointy object stabbing me. What was I doing traveling alone? I asked myself. Many European hitchhikers came to Turkey in pairs. It could've been fun if I traveled with Riyad to see Hasankeyf, an ancient town in danger of being flooded within two years by a new dam. But, alas, I had a few days of writing to do beside Nemrut Lake.
And if I would've been totally honest, I would've said that Riyad took up a lot of room in the tent and I didn't sleep well. I had a girl in mind I would've loved having beside me. But, I was soon to be "yalniz" (alone).
This Turkish girl, with whom I would've loved to do all the following things, inspired me to make a list of what I loved to do with female "arkadas" (friends). Here it was:
Listen to Soda Stereo (relaxing Argentinian rock music).
Listen to Super Mama Djambo (energetic African music).
Listen to Selif Keita (relaxing African music).
Eat ice cream.
Blues dance together - slow and sensually.
Swing dance, latin dance, or waltz.
Read aloud to one another.
Help each other learn a language.
Hang out with friends or family.
Swim or go skinny-dipping.
Take a bath together.
Sit with her on my lap.
Sleep with our arms and hands and bodies entangled.
Kiss for an hour, moving only our tongues and lips - creatively, playfully, raising each other's blood pressure.
Lightly touch her cheeks and eyelids and lips.
Take off each other's clothes, piece by piece.
Kiss her ears, neck, breasts, nipples.
Touch her thighs, butt, arms, clavicle.
Allow her hands full freedom in exploring me.
Have the girl get on top, or lie below.
Abstain from sex of any kind.
Gently achieve the ideal state of excitement/arousal, avoiding a climax whenever possible, and hover there endlessly - never tiring of kissing, never losing interest in playing, always becoming more and more attracted to one another.
"The world is wonderful, almost too wonderful, when you're kissing. Wonderful and then some. Capable every time of making you experience something more wonderful than you've ever known - especially if you're kissing someone unselfish enough to not want sex. But, people are too stupid to see that sex kills this, and so they destroy the unending wonderfulness for the fleeting thrill of sex." - J.Breen philosophy (2006)
I was unselfish, because I believed that I and my soul would eventually live all people's lives. I completely accepted myself and wanted to accept all people. I also believed that God and I were one. A J.D. Salinger character said, "Jesus realized there is no separation from God." I had no insecurities and therefore no need for sex.
"... sex between girls and boys is an unequal activity, with unequal consequences and penalties." - Elizabeth Abbott
Celibate relationships between men and women were equal for both parties. Women were not giving up something that required, in exchange: money, financial security, commitment, obligation. Love could remain free. Harmonious relationships like the ones I desired could form quickly, without having to overcome the obstacles of a world that wanted sex.
It was especially difficult to find a girlfriend in Turkey. A clean and handsome, twenty-five-year-old guy named Sefa gave me a ride recently. He said that - though he owned a business, was an obedient Muslim, and wanted to get married - it was nearly impossible for him to even begin talking with a girl in his large city of Erzurum. The girls wanted money, gold bracelets.
It looked like Riyad was going to be the only guest I'd have in my tent for a long time. He was a cool guy. I wished him, "Bonne voyage!" to Hasankeyf.
And I remained "bir tane" (only one) ...
the Modern Oddyseus.
(Complete quote from E. Abbott, author of "A History of Celibacy" ... "until randy males are not admired as studs while their randy sisters are vilified as sluts, until society and its laws genuinely accept that babies are created by fathers as well as mothers, sex between girls and boys is an unequal activity, with unequal consequences and penalties.")