Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Ode to Troy

The shores where ANZAC landed. (ANZAC is Australian and New Zealand Army Corp, thank you Troy!)

We also went to Galipolli where the Australians, British, French and New Zealanders invaded Turkey (then the Ottoman Empire) in 1915. The cliffs weren't quite Normandy, but it was still pretty incredible.

Pretty incredible sunset.

Practicing my photography skills..but it's kind of cool how he is holding the sun.

At the theater in Teregama...this place was definitely off the beaten path, but it was great to see and almost no tourist...probably because it was winter and almost closing time...but still. the AGEAN SEA!!!!

Serkan, Troy, and I at Troy in front of the fake Trojan horse that was made in 1975.

When the German's found Troy, the city was too well intact and they kept digging deeper, ruining much of what was left of the great city. But it is still impressive to see. I don't know if Homer's writing are any more "alive" to me, but I was still excited about seeing the city.

Really our trip was great. I was quite the backseat driver since I can't drive manual, but Troy was patient. He is by far my best friend here and I tell him everything. I hate to think that he'll leave in a month and a half. I have other friends here, many actually, but when you make real friends, it's always hard to see them go or to leave them. It was the same with Rachel and Joy. It's a bitter sweet thing to travel. I have always met incredible people, but then inevitably, you have to let them go. They pop into your life and give you so much to take with you, and then they are gone. Not that I don't see Rachel or Joy and I know I will see Troy again, but maybe I am selfish to want them with me all the time. But I like to think my best friends make me a better person, and wanting to be better isn't selfish.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

British International School

I went to the BIS to see if I could volunteer there. And they will let me. So twice a week I will work with ESL students. I'm really looking forward to it. They were excited that I was a native English speaker. So I am assuming the other aides or volunteers are Turkish.

Last Friday I went to workout at the university facilities. They really really nice, but it costs 5 YTL, about $4. On the weekends it is 10 YTL. I think I am just spoiled that at Ball State it was free. I really hate paying, but I will go again tomorrow. It felt really good to get some exercise besides walking up five hills a day.

We got a shower rod and curtain and had a man install them...the bathroom issues have quickly been more water everywhere. It's a beautiful thing.

I have come to the conclusion that I will most likely have to live in the US for at least two years to get my Masters and have two years experience under my belt. Unless I get right into DoDDs, any good international school will want/expect two years at least. Maybe Katie can have a baby while I am home and I won't have to fly back and forth a million times. =)

Friday, November 16, 2007

Joy and the girls!!

After a great Saturday morning drawing and painting with Troy and Mustafa, the girls arrived from Baumholder!

(Drawing in Mustafa's studio. Troy lives with an artist who comes and paints during the day. It is so relaxing to set back and not think of anything but the lines, colors, shades...)

Seeing Joy was so overwhelming. Leaving Germany was really hard for me and a lot of those emotions came back, but since it's Joy she quickly smoothed them. The girls were so adorable and had a really hard time calling me Andrea instead of "Miss Wiese." We did so many things, I think we were all so exhausted.

Emily and Sarah inside the Blue Mosque

The girls and I in front of Aya Sofya! The inside really is incredible.

Palace Cistern
It is a vast underground water storage tank originally built by Constantine the Great. It was enlarged by Justinian in the 6th century. The cistern was largely neglected after the fall of the Byzantine Empire in 1453.

Sarah, Emily, and Ataturk!!!!

Topkapi Palace...the first Ottoman Palace built in Constantinople.

Joy with the was Sarah and Emily's first steps in ASIA!

This was Emily and Sarah's first time playing tavla (backgammon) and they both beat my really good friend Hakan!

Joy, Emily, and Sarah outside of Istanbul was a great modern art museum. Some of the works really challenged my views on the Middle East.

So as you can see, we did soooo much. I love sharing the culture here. And everything I do something, I see something new and different. I can't wait to see them again!

Friday, November 09, 2007

Last of Ankara!

Rotary is truly amazing! They paid $2000 per bus for 22 buses to take students from Istanbul to Ankara for the anniversary of Ataturk's death. They went to the mansolenm and the Independence War Museum. While we were there we had tea with the top official in the Turkish military, but for me the highlight was the students asking me questions to practice their English...they were so cute!! They get so excited to use it especially with a real "American."
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more from Rotary!

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To Ankara with Rotary!!

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Friday, November 02, 2007 you like it mom??
A street....obviously.
Inside the temple...
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Turkish translation...
My friend Troy went with...he's not Jewish...but he might as well should be. Plus, he did great...they wouldn't let us set together because women had to sit upstairs.
Troy in his kipa!
After temple...we're ridiculously cute.
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