Here is my first blog about my stay in Istanbul! It includes trips to the awesome tourist sites (Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Topakapi Palace, the Grand Bazaar, etc), and a general overview of what the program has been like so far. In my first two weeks I made tons of new friends, discovered just how much Istanbul loves cats, drank so many cups of Turkish tea, and learned how to order a dürüm or baklava in (far from perfect) Turkish. I have already fallen in love with seeing the stunning minarettes everywhere, the breathtaking bosphorus at sunset, the incredible food, and the colorful and friendly people.
I am convinced that Istanbul is one of the greatest cities ever, and I hope you agree!
In addition, here are a few of my favorite pictures from the first few weeks:
I am originally from beautiful Boulder, Colorado, but I am currently a junior at the University of Rochester double-majoring in Film and Honors Anthropology. While growing up, I lived in Shanghai for three years, but I have never been to anywhere in the Middle East before - a fact which I am very much looking forward to changing. I love exploring different cultures, making movies, eating delicious food, and being outside. While in Istanbul, I intend to extensively taste-test Turkish food, delve into the city and culture, and learn what it is like to go to a local university. I honestly have no idea what my future job will be, but I am passionate about eliminating institutional discrimination and hope to one day change the world for the better in some way.
My friend Madi and I got invited to a barbeque at our friend Xavier’s house in Eze, about a 15 minute drive from Nice. I was really excited, imagining the kind of food at an American barbeque: hot dogs, hamburgers, watermelon, coleslaw, potato salad, chips, beer, etc.
Perhaps one of the biggest challenges of living abroad is one that no one really warns you about: going to the grocery store by yourself. Monoprix seemed harmless enough, with its fresh market and wide selection of miscellaneous groceries and other items like clothing.
Your umbrella, which has seen you through countless rainstorms, mini-downpours, and one instance of freak snowfall but which now rests in the corner, thoroughly dry after a week of 80-degree weather and clear skies almost every day. Or at least maybe it's still there?