An Excursion to Es Park

Sunday July 5th,

Joe and I took an excursion to the city today and went to Es Park, a huge shopping mall. While Joe looked for a high-quality camera, I did a little shopping myself. At one store there was a very friendly guy working there who helped me pick out some clothes. He spoke English fairly well and apparently got a degree in international relations. According to him I look 20; I was happy to have guessed his age right on at 22.

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I met up with Joe again at lunch where he got a burger and I got a pedi (a traditional Turkish food that has cheese inside a type of fried bread). While getting my food I found out that the girl working at the cafe is 16 and interested in law. Everyone is so friendly that it is very easy to get to know people.

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Joe and I in the minibus on the way back to the institute

I came back and continued reading Total Control. I began this book on my flight over but haven’t spent much time on it at all. Today I became engrossed in its contents and didn’t put it down until I was done several hours later. If any of you are interested in a fast-paced mystery, I would definitely recommend it!

At this point Ümit Bay called me for dinner. Right away everyone began talking to me in straight Turkish without trying to interject any English words or slow down and surprisingly enough, I got a very brief idea of what was going on! I definitely think that being immersed in a culture helps you learn a language a lot quicker than a classroom setting.

The past few days have been a roller coaster with the family. They are originally from Adana, a city in the far south, but Ümit Bay’s job is here in Eskisehir. They have been debating finding a house in the city center of Eskisehir or going back to Adana and I have no idea if or when I will have to say goodbye. The family is going to Adana next Friday for Byram (the festival that ends Ramadan) and I am traveling this week for work. I may not see the family depending on whether or not they leave early.  Because of all of this I said my goodbyes today. Right before tea I brought them the baklava and a card that I had wrote in Turkish with the help of google translate. The family was very happy and said they would forever keep the card as a memory 🙂 My fingers are crossed that tonight wasn’t actually goodbye.

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