Our adventure began this afternoon as we made our way, by cab, to the Otogard (Bus Station). The plan was to meet up with some friends and head to Ankara (the capital city of Turkey) for the weekend. But our plans, as they often do, went awry and my classmate and I wound up at a different station than the friends we were meeting.  This would only have been a minor complication had our friends not been holding our tickets for the bus. After some very confusing conversations with the Bus Station employees, we finally found the one employee that spoke enough english to understand the problem. However, by that time, our bus had left. Finally, after many phone calls and  some strained and broken communication, we got it all figured out and my classmate and I were on our way to Ankara. We ended up having to ride on a bus separate from our friends, but it was a small matter compared to the effort it took to actually get on the bus.

And then the real fun began. My classmate and I ended up siting in the most opportune of seats… between and row full of women with unruly, screaming toddlers and a row full of incredibly nasty and rude women. Joy. It was gonna be a long bus ride. Luckily, the bus was big and comfy and we spent our time munching on snacks, talking sh@t to each other, and snoozing. One thing that I am really happy to report is that I didn’t get motion sick like I normally do!  Anyway, 7+ hours later, we arrived in Ankara and were greeted by our friends.

We made our way home to one of our friend’s parents, where we are staying for the weekend, and were greeted warmly by her family. It was 12am, but her mother had cooked for us and had a huge spread laid out on the table. Indulgence. Home cooked Turkish food, tea and cake for dessert, her mom went all out. Everything was delicious. After we ate, we sat out on the balcony and smoked, our bellies feeling full and content and talked. What a beautiful way to start our time in Ankara.

I have only been here for a couple of hours, but I have already noticed that Ankara is a whole new world in comparison with Beşiktas, where I am currently living. It is quiet here. The night is still with an occasional disruption from a car driving by. There are no booming fireworks or the far off music of a nearby waterfront bar. Ankara seems to actually sleep at night.

Since we got in so late, I can’t really comment on the city except to say that it feels more spread out, it looks more modern and the air here is dry and cooler. Tomorrow the exploration begins and I look forward to what Ankara has in store for us. But now, considering that it is after three in the morning, the big comfy couch is calling my name.

Peace and Love

  1. Kat,

    Your writing is very moving and lets me know the real value of this experience. It reminds me very much of the journals I kept when I first travelled through Africa . . . .

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