Not there and yet still there

Shared by Christopher Herzog on October 2, 2020
Hasan is someone I came to know more through his actions and what he said to others.  I regret  I never had long conversations with him myself.  I probably would be the wiser for it, about houses, about food, about politics, about money, about how to build stuff.

Through Deniz, I always knew he liked me and had my back.  He told Deniz he could not believe his luck, to have found a son-in-law who doesn't like beer.  When we were deciding to leave the US to go to England, he asked Deniz, "And how does Chris feel?"

But I heard these things second hand.  For me, he was always more a man of action than a man of words.  Having retired from engineering, he became someone who bought, built, improved, and sold houses.  This real estate was for me, a salaried academic, a window into new worlds and new ways of living: the house in Duvall on its thirty acres of woodland, converted lovingly from an old barn into a light, airy, and yet well insulated living space, or the house in Cesme with its fig and apricot trees, warmth and sunlight, an entry point into Turkish culture and Deniz's extended family.

One advantage of having come to know Hasan in this way is that he still feels present in my life. I sometimes hear Hasan's voice when I talk with Deniz.  I see Hasan's work when I look at the house in Duvall.  And I feel Hasan's presence when I take vacations in Cesme with Deniz and the kids and talk with his sisters, nieces, and nephews.

Elaine and Greg Herzog

Shared by Elaine Herzog on October 1, 2020
Greg and I first met Hasan in March of 2010 at the wedding ceremony of his daughter Deniz to our son Christopher. Later we traveled to Turkey with Deniz and Chris and their infant son Cyrus to vacation and to celebrate their marriage with her extended family in Istanbul. Hasan was always exceedingly warm, welcoming, and clearly proud of his daughter to whom he was devoted. The pictures from both these occasions show a happy father and grandfather hosting family and friends in celebration of his growing family.

In Turkey, Hasan was our gracious and generous host: meeting us at the airport, guiding us through Istanbul, where he protected us from enthusiastic rug merchants, and then on the Turkish coast. We traveled with friends whom he also welcomed and who became his friends as well - corresponding after we all returned to the US. This past year when we traveled through Seattle Hasan was again a generous host and guide through Kirkland. Though he was obviously not feeling well he welcomed us to his home where he and Deniz had lived for many years.

Hasan once told us a story which speaks for the loving father he always was.  As you are probably aware, his wife and Deniz’s mother died as a young woman when Deniz was a small child. Hasan was a smoker then.  One day a few years after the loss of her mother, Deniz came home from school and was upset that Hasan was smoking.  She had learned in school of the dangers and said that she had lost one parent and did not know what would happen to her if she lost both.  He never smoked another cigarette. A single father, Hasan raised Deniz to become a loving wife and mother and a very successful scientist to boot.
We are glad to have known Hasan and will miss him.   We are glad that Deniz is part of our lives.

August and Hasan

Shared by Christopher Herzog on October 1, 2020
August remembers hugging Dede the last time we left Duvall.

Cyrus and Hasan

Shared by Christopher Herzog on October 1, 2020
Cyrus remembers the time when Dede cooked him two eggs, potatoes and toast at Duvall.
Hasan had a BIG bottle of hot sauce, not like the little ones we have at home.  
Remarkably, Dede's eggs taste better without the hot sauce, unlike the ones Mommy and Daddy and nearly everyone else make.  The potatoes were perfect, not too fried and not too soft.  The unbroken yolk of the eggs were cooked to perfection.

Dede had a magic touch in the kitchen.  He could prepare a perfect salad with peeled tomatoes, onions, and green peppers, or a pan fried tilapia with just the right amount of black pepper and red chili flakes, or an improvised black bean stew with mushrooms which Deniz refused to touch but Chris thought was excellent.  

The cupboard was always stocked with huge bags and jars of good snack food from Costco -- crystallized ginger, biscotti, chocolate covered dried mango.  

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