Are you looking to pamper yourself during these cold and dreary winter months? Here's a great suggestion. I often get requests for information about visiting a "hamam." A hamam is a traditional Turkish Bath. They vary according to place; some are geared towards tourists and are more pricey; but most are traditional and a reasonable... Continue Reading →
Starting the New Year off with this great post I came across today on women's healthcare. The blog is written in both English and Turkish. Gizem Onay Collet is a native of Ankara. She practices and teaches yoga including prenatal yoga and trains yoga instructors. She also offers childbirth preparation classes and gives workshops on women's... Continue Reading →
Sharing this blog from 5 years ago. Two minutes of silence in honor of Ataturk.
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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Just a quick post to share - Last weekend, my husband and I did a 6.2 km run to raise awareness for cancer research. It was actually open to walkers and bikers too. There was no cost to join. There were t-shirts for sale and raffle tickets to purchase - these were really the only fund... Continue Reading →
I am sure you all remember the "hype" a couple of months ago. Everyone was taking the ALS Bucket Challenge. I did it myself . . . sans bucket. Sadly, and as always, people had negative things to say about it - mostly because not everyone was donating cash for the cause. But the naysayers... Continue Reading →
The other day, my assistant said he wished it would rain or snow. I smirked a little at first, thinking what an oddity. Only my mother would pray for rain (for her garden). But I know exactly what he means. It's been a very difficult month for me. One month ago my sister died. I... Continue Reading →
Rave as you will about Turkish healthcare, I've had nothing but trouble with it. (Remember this?) Up until now I could at least say that I had little difficulty with the government health insurance (SGK). Up until now . . . So Turkey has two health insurance systems, the government insurance, which was formerly provided... Continue Reading →
One of the most difficult problems for any expat is translation. Living in Turkey without a full grasp of the language presents its own challenges from day to day. Problems with translation can make those matters worse. I am lucky enough to have a husband and several friends who speak both English and Turkish and... Continue Reading →
2012. What a year. Here's a look back at some of my better blog posts, one from each month. I left out the recipes and restaurant reviews - although there were some goodies there! January, Keeping Up Appearances - How I learned to cover up. February, Junking - Comparing Turkey and the U.S. and my... Continue Reading →
Inhale. Recent months have been extremely busy. Lots of work. Lots of house stuff. Lots of family. Life can be stressful, even when you are enjoying it. And then there are the times that aren’t so enjoyable. I am one of those people who have a hard time dealing with stress. For my body, stress... Continue Reading →
Sometimes I am greatly amazed by little things in Turkey's healthcare system. Like the fancy machines. You name it. Turks have it. Lots of lights and shiny metals. And the pharmacies. Sure, you need a prescription for some things, but there's a lot of good stuff you can get without it. Not to sound like... Continue Reading →
In 2008, Ankara was listed as one of the world's worst cities for air pollution. The large increase in natural gas prices and the distribution of free coal by municipalities prior to local elections has led to an enormous jump in pollution levels in Ankara, reaching 9,350 micrograms per cubic meter in the Sıhhiye district.... Continue Reading →
I realize it is no longer popular to smoke. (By the way, that makes it much more difficult to buy a quick gift from a tourist shop. Remember the terrible ash trays your parents had in the 70's?) So this post is not about whether I smoke, cigarette butts on the streets, or banning smoking... Continue Reading →