We just got dropped at Meşeli, the village where we would be spending the day, in the morning, all eleven of us, at the mosque, one of the only two public buildings in the village – the other one being the village hall. A few seconds of confusion as I watched the kids decide on what they wanted to do. They had been assigned to survey all the houses in the village and despite it being a small one, with less than 300 people, it was still quite a challenging task to complete everything by 3 pm, which is when we were getting picked up. I ended up jumping on the surveying wagon as well since walking around on my own in a half empty village wasn’t going to be much fun anyway.
Breakfast is, hands down, my favourite meal of the day. It definitely is part of my morning routine and usually I plan my time – which sometimes involve getting up quite early – so I get at least half a hour to enjoy this part of the day, catching up with the news over my cup of tea. I don’t think I’ve ever left home without having breakfast, that would be the same feeling as leaving my phone or wallet home. There are many times, as unhealthy as that sounds, I even tend to have breakfast food for my other meals as well, just for the comfort it provides.
Now, what do we call breakfast food? Living with two people of different nationalities, this has become quite the debate in our room. And even when I look back, my breakfast options have definitely evolved over the years and definitely changes given the country I am in. Breakfast tends to be a cultural thing and here in Turkey, you even have special breakfast houses you can go to for the whole Turkish breakfast experience. Hence, my roommates and I have decided to document, as far as possible, the different breakfasts in our lives, past and present and future.
Today was the Turkish breakfast, of course. When I first came to Turkey, I have to say, I was a bit shocked at the options we had for breakfast and instead of eating what was offered at the cafeteria, I used to buy everything from the market and eat in my room. I’ve changed quite a lot since.
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.