Collage of Turkey...
I thought it would be a good day to write a blog, since today, Aug. 12th, would have been my return date back to Vancouver. Well, things have changed. I decided to go to Turkey and felt that my time spent on earth should be doing mostly things I enjoy. haha. So yeah, I'm partially settled in Barcelona again! This time, in a far more... colourful barrio, Raval. At first, Raval has the tendancy to give off a rather sketchy vibe at times (i.e my first midnight stroll through hooker lane), but after a few days of actually living here, I've discovered some pretty awesome hangouts for myself. For example, Carmelita's, an uber cool cafe down the road where I check my email everyday. The best thing of all is, my flatmate doesn't really speak English, So I actually have to practice my Spanish! And he even understands me! I've really lucked out with him. He's got good taste in music, movies and furniture. Thinking the next few months will be cool. That's if I can find a job..
Buuttt.. not gonna get into that.
Wow. What a place. My dad and several other people had told me many amazing things about it. And boy, where they right on. It was a trip I'll never forget. My first day in Istanbul was spent racing around the Grand Baazar, the Spice Baazar, a quick meatball lunch nearby, down to one of Batu's shoe outlets where Ali got her fortune told by the shop keeper, some local bars and then up to Taxim Square (where Ali, Batu, Ilgaz and I picked up our fellow traveller Jamie). We all got to see the Aya Sofia, a Hammam (never felt cleaner), Blue Mosque, took a ferry down the Bospherous. But the best parts of the trip were seeing the surreal landscape of Pamukkale, the stunning ruins of Ephesus, the intense blue Aegean Sea, experiencing the heat in Selçuk and Antalya... And Ankara was the biggest surprise of all. Many people turn their nose up at Ankara, but it was there that Jamie and I got to really experience being foreigners in Turkey. Ilgaz, my old work friend had been translating the entire trip and he finally had to get back to work (in Ankara), so Jamie and I got to try out our pathetic Turkish. The people there were really genuine and also quite interested in us being in their city (I suppose not many tourists go there). We got to try some more delicious turkish food, meet some nice people, try 3 different types of public transport, finally rest in the grass, and explore the totally different world of the old town and neighbouring castle ruin, situated ontop of this mountain-like hill. The little kids there were so funny and cute, just following us around and being adorable. Hehe. Then Jamie and I travelled eastward to Kappadokya. Possibly the strangest landscape I've ever seen. Lots of bizarre rock formations and caves. Our hostel was aparently in a cave. Lots of hiking, biking and exploring (Jamie was really patient with this city girl). haha.
Jamie then had to leave (running out of money and needed to see more things), so he spent a week exploring the south-east. Where as I returned to Ankara to hang out with Ilgaz and his family. His sister Nas and his mother I hung out with mostly. I learned some Turkish recipes, went to some malls with Naz (Turkish equivilant to Penelope Cruz, STUNNING), and just chilled out. Then I returned to Istanbul to check out the Istanbul Modern (awesome) and soak up the chaos. Batu's cousin and friend picked me up from the bus depot and took me around the city (bless!). It was nice to hang out with some immature young guys like some of my friends back at home. It was fun to laugh and joke around with them. :) I think I needed it, since saying goodbye to Ali, Jamie and Ilgaz & co. was a bit painful, and stressing about finding an apartment along with not having money was taking a toll on me. But so far, I have an apartment. I have a cool flatmate. I'm safe, healthy and happy. So next step, I just need to find a job. My sister told me yesterday that when things get like this, you should think of yourself in a movie. Like, this is the part where you are establishing your new chapter and it will take a few more scenes in the movie before something like, finding that thing you were looking for, will happen. It's helping Kaja, thank you :)
I'll post up some more pics of Turkey in my next entry... xoxo
- Barcelona, Catalunya, Spain
- No, I didn't come to Barcelona because of THAT movie. (although it did fuel my obsession with this city, slightly). First time living away from home, away from Canada... Thinking it's gonna be an adventure. I want to share my ups and downs with you during my European get away, so enjoy. :)