I had been keeping a few notes while we didn't have internet...so now that we offically have internet here they are!
So today I met my friend Mert. He has been very helpful so far. The apartment that he found for me and Elif is barely a five minute walk from campus. There are nice white walls and Ikea wooden floors. There is a toilet in the bathtub, which is suppose to be removed very soon. There is not an oven or a refrigerator. Nor is there any furniture, so shopping I go. =) We should have everything by Saturday and we’ll get everything, including myself, moved in!
I’m living in the apartment, but the toilet is leaking and the bathroom sink has water, but not drainage, it just falls on the floor. I went to the lady’s apartment above me to use her toilet. They called the plumber, but so far, no one has shown up. Elif is getting here at 8:30, but I’ve been here until 10am this morning, now I’m going nuts alone. Plus, I’m hungry. There are still a lot of things that I have to figure out. But my room looks great.
Everyone here speaks English, but not a lot and usually not correctly or not saying what they want to say. I passed a grandma and her two grandchildren on the way home for an errand. They waved me over and started giggling. The grandma wanted to ask me a question, but only the two little girls knew how to speak any English. It sounds like, “she – question – you.” Then “nation,” which, of course, I say American. Then I get responses, “ooooooh, ya, ya.” Then “where – from.” Now they don’t really know where Chicago is, but they have heard of it none the less, so they nod. They try to ask something else, but the girls don’t know how to say it and the grandma shoos me away with a smile.
Not to get my own hopes up, but I think we’re going to actually get internet today or tomorrow. We bought the modem and the telephone is working so we went to the internet store and got the passwords and things.
Tomorrow is Yom Kippur which will mean that I’m fasting, or at least try. I’m a little worried because we do so much physical activity everyday. Not by choice but there are so many hills here. Lots of sweat involved to get anywhere. But lots of people don’t eat all day because of Ramadan, so at least I won’t have to watch people eat all day. I tried to find a synagogue to go to, but there are some unique ones and I don’t just want to walk in, nor do I think that’s allowed.
The grandma that waved to me the other day is still waving everyday. I really like seeing her.
I’m slowly….really slowly learning some Turkish. It helps to have Elif because I can ask her what things mean and how to say things, but other times I rely on her Turkish too much. Next week I’ll start the actual Turkish class though and that should help a lot! The Rosetta Stone program is coming in very handy now because I do it at home and then hear it on the street and practice with Elif. But it’s hard to understand things when people speak so quickly.