I apologize for being absent for so long. There is really no excuse other than I’ve been extremely busy getting acclimated to school and Istanbul.
It was my 21st birthday recently and it was the greatest birthday I’ve ever had. I had a small dinner with friends where we ordered pizza and other generally unhealthy things. After dinner we headed over to my friends apartment where there was to be a big gathering of people where we would celebrate and get ready to go out on the town. In true Scout form I had the biggest wipeout of my life at the apartment party and had a black and blue bruise for weeks to prove it. However, despite that humiliating but not all together surprising fall the pre-party was very fun. Two Turkish friends of mine even bought me a banana cake, Turks LOVE their bananas on cake, and everyone sang happy birthday to me.
At about 11:45 we all headed to the bus stop where we were to take the last midnight bus to Taksim. There was a group of about 30 of us so as you can imagine it was an obnoxious bus-stop gathering. Finally we boarded and spent the rest of the night at Turkish club. The greatest party of the night though was when two of my friends brought me a “wet hamburger” in the club. For those of you who don’t know what this is, which is everyone I assume, a wet hamburger is basically a small and frankly quite sad hamburger that has been steamed into submission. Soggy and disgusting this little meal is the most wonderful thing I’ve ever had and I couldn’t have been happier with my little birthday present. The night ended with all of us tired but very happily taking a taxi home and sleep.
The next day some friends and I decided to venture out to Belgrad forest, which resides just outside of Istanbul. We brought an enormous amount of food and set up camp for a while eating, talking, and watching the locals brew their tea over tiny campfires. The sky got dark around 5:30 so we headed out to the bus stop but almost missed it because we were all distracted by this exercise/playground equipment that was erected on the sidewalk. I’ve never run for a bus before but you should try it, it’s actually really exhilarating.
Finally the weekend ended with a delicious Sunday brunch where I had a traditional Turkish breakfast, which includes cheeses, bread, dips of various sorts, and an egg. I then spent the rest that beautiful Sunday planted in the library, catching up on work that I had neglected for far too long.
Thanks for reading and again I apologize for being absent for so long. I’ve promised myself that I will start posting once a week so you should be seeing a lot more of me.