Two minutes of peace

Sharing this blog from 5 years ago. Two minutes of silence in honor of Ataturk.

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Adventures in Ankara

This morning I expereinced something miraculous, wonderous, beautiful, strange, and different.  Today is the 72nd anniversary of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk’s death.  He was the founding father of modern Turkey.  At exactly 9:05 this morning, the precise time that he passed, all of Turkey came to a standstill for 2 minutes of silence.  I was driving on a highway at that time.  All of the vehicles stopped.   I stopped.  The radio stations went silent.  A few people got out of their cars and stood at attention. 

Two minutes of silence is not quite an appropriate term for what I experienced.  The driver of every vehicle soulfully honked his horn.  I am told that people will stop whereever they are, walking down the street or up a flight of stairs, and stand still for two minutes.

For most Turks, this is likely a sign of patriotism, a gesture of respect. …

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