It’s been 3 months?

December 30, 2010 § Leave a comment

I guess it’s technically 3 1/2 months that I’ve been in Turkey now, but those first couple of weeks spent in a bizarre Fulbright orientation bubble deserve their own ‘period of my life’ recognition.

5 weeks in a hotel in a hotel followed by 2 glorious months of apartment dwelling.  Countless moments of “I’m packing it all in, shove it, Turkey” followed by a free dinner from my Ozcanlar Kofte cashier/portly adoptive Turkish father.  Classes of glassy-eyed students followed by lessons of enthusiastic singalongs, evil eye jewelry gifts, and wonderful birthday messages.

Before I left the US I read countless “Things to Know Before You Go Abroad” articles and blog posts.  I thought I was ready for the amazingly cliche “roller coaster of emotions” that I was about to experience.  I wasn’t, and I’m still not.  But it’s impossible to be completely prepared, and anyone who says she is is lying.  As long as I hang in there till the next day, I know that something beautiful will bloom from the shit fertilizer of the previous disaster.

I’ve got one more week of lessons in Tekirdag, one week of exams, then five glorious weeks of vacation!  The plan right now is to spend three weeks in Izmir recording Jewish oral histories for the Sephardic Center’s Ladino Database project (more info to come later), then jet across the Mediterranean for two weeks in Spain with friends and my old Spanish host family.  And yes, for those eagerly awaiting an answer, I am returning for a second semester at NKU.  Leaving mid-year seems oddly incomplete and I’ve grown attached to my 250 little buggers.  Besides, could I really leave before the annual Oil Wrestling festival?

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