Yesterday marked six months since we arrived in Ankara, Turkey. I can’t tell if it feels like much longer or much shorter. Anyway, here are my Top 10 moments of the past six months.
10. Teaching. I don’t think I can boil it down to one moment in particular, but some time within the past six months, I became a teacher. It is something I enjoy and feel competent in, despite the side effects of thinking about grammar every minute of the day.
9. Turkey (at least Ankara) goes a step beyond the Big Mac at McDonald’s providing what they call the Mega Mac. It is the same thing as a Big Mac except that it has four patties of beef instead of two. Still only one slice of cheese, but four beef patties. I ate one. I don’t think I will again.
8. The Donut Day in which we were unable to successfully procure donuts from Dunkin’ Donuts. We had bagels somewhere else instead.
7. Receiving a free haircut for no reason at all.
6. Being able to watch a Christmas concert with real actual Christmas music performed by professional Turkish musicians. It was the first event of its kind in the entire country.
5. Watching the Vikings beat the Cowboys in the playoffs live on an actual television with buffalo wings, beer and chips. Perhaps nothing has felt more like home than that day.
4. A giant Thanksgiving dinner filled with all the essentials to help us not miss home quite as much. We even got to follow it up with a little football.
3. Going out with students for the first time. We went to a complete dive and shared some drinks. Then I got to take a taxi home by myself for the first time.
2. Receiving an absolutely beautiful ship as a gift from one of my classes. Its name is Confection.
1. We had a fabulous trip to Istanbul where we were able to have a bit of vacation and see some absolutely amazing sites and Stephanie took some beautiful pictures. There’s nothing quite like eating breakfast while overlooking the Bosphorus, Hagia Sofia and the Blue Mosque.