First of all, no I haven’t dropped off the surface of the Earth although I came close to that. I haven’t been very active lately and for those of you that were wondering why (I sincerely hope you exist), the reason is, I’ve been busy adult-ing. After spending the first half of this year jetsetting around Europe mostly to Austria, Germany, Hungary and Cyprus and my amazing trip to Mauritius to attend the wedding of the year (in my honest opinion), I spent the whole of June trying to finish writing up my research – the reason I move and actually live in Turkey. And today, I actually finalised one of my papers and I have never felt so proud. I’m currently working on two projects at the moment: one about the spatiotemporal trend of rainfall in Turkey and the other about landslide risks in the Black Sea Region; both of which will be submitted (and hopefully be accepted) for publication. My summer at the moment is looking like it’s going to be filled with more research and some travel – the two best things of my life at the moment. My parents are spoiling me with yet another trip to Mauritius and I’ll be spending August in Germany mostly, with the occasional trip (hopefully) to Prague, Vienna and Copenhagen amongst others.
I’m definitely going to be around a little bit more as from now, unless I die from food overdose during my holidays in Mauritius – I’ve already sent my mother a list of food I’ve been craving for. Although if you’re missing me THAT much, I’m usually much more present on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram than here.
When I chose to study Geography at King’s College London, what I was most excited about was the COMPULSORY fieldtrip in Morocco during my second year which would last a week rather than the whole three years of awesomeness I was about to undertake. If you ask me now, that fieldtrip was probably NOT the highlight of my university days – singing to Barbie Girl on the streets of London was (and that was us being sober) – but it’s definitely up there in my top ten.
The trip had been planned for us down to the T, which meant we didn’t have much to worry about, other than missing the flight – which some nearly did, of course. Or getting stopped at the airport for questioning because we were carrying professional surveying equipment. Yes that actually happened and being one of the few French-speakers, I ended up in the questioning room as an interpreter (should add this to my CV) with my tutor – the responsible adult who was swearing his head off about everything while I enjoyed quite an interesting conversation about Moroccan food with the customs officer who was getting our papers ready. I never did tell him what we ended up talking about, he still thinks it was of the utmost important, but then food is, isn’t it?
I’ve just spent the past 9 months living in a yurt, i.e. a Turkish dormitory and I have to say, I didn’t think I would make it. It hasn’t been a horrible experience but it hasn’t been all rainbows and unicorns either. I’ve definitely learned a couple of things since I first moved here though.
1. It’s going to suck
…. But then it will suck less and less. I remember my very first day here. I had just spent about 27 hours on the ‘road’ trying to get from Mauritius to Ankara, including at 15 hours at Nairobi Airport sitting in uncomfortable chairs watching chick flicks and reading manga. I was tired and sleep-deprived – the only time I had slept was during my one hour flight from Istanbul to Ankara which was so brief that it hardly counts at all. And seeing where I would be staying the next three years just made want to spend the next 27 hours back on (more than) a plane back home. It’s old and cold – not just in the temperature sense – and it took a while to get used to the communal bathrooms and shared rooms. With the academic year over, my dorms will be closing for summer because of repairs so I’m having to move to a designated one until it opens again (hopefully) in September. It took months to finally get settled in and get a hang around everything, just the thought of leaving now is heart-breaking.