Hey, guys

I believe the last time you heard about me was in December. Since then, a lot has happened. Let’s start with January.

Overall, January was a quiet month. Work wise, I went to one high school in order to talk about my experiences as an ESC volunteer. As usual – after seminar or some meeting – the place is offering some çay or coffee. This time we got a small present also, a notebook 🙂 It came in handy 🙂

Also, I helped preparing one of the project which took place in February (I will talk about it later). Most of the students had exams which means lots of workshops didn’t happen and because of that, my work was not that intense and busy.

A week before end of the month, one girl from France came to office in order to do her internship. Her name is Emilie.

At the end of the month, I had my birthday which I celebrated with the office team and I had a small surprise in my apartment from other volunteers. With some of the office team we went out, ate burgers, and later, drank a tea and ate a cake. The cake was really good. I think it is something you should try in Türkiye because they know how to make good cakes 🙂 Also, the office team made a small present to me: a salt lamp.

When January was mostly a quiet month, February, on the other hand, was busier. Let’s start from the beginning.

Firstly, Leyre and I took bicycles for a short trip out of the city of İzmir. There is one place in Bostanlı where you can take a bicycle but, in return, you have to give your ID-card. It was nice. It was free but the bicycle itself is not as comfortable as you might think. The weather was amazing: sunny and warm. The opposite of what I am used to have at this time of the year.

The first week of the month, I participated in a youth exchange that I helped preparing in January. Muhsin – the project coordinator – and I facilitated it. In January, I helped preparing the schedule and topics to talk about. The exchange was between Türkiye and Germany and, mainly, we spoke about migration and racism.

The first day of the project was quite intense and emotional. The following days were a bit chillier and more easy-going. The participants were happy and they enjoyed their time here.

And here we go … to March.March was a bit different since Pi Youth Association celebrated their 10th year anniversary and we had our mid-term evaluation. Other than that, it was a month like every other. I spent most of my time in İzmir and didn’t travel around that much. Emotionally, it has been a lot of ups and downs. At the beginning of the month, I went to a Turkish engagement party. If life gives you a chance to go to this kind of events, then take it! In Estonia, we don’t have parties like that. An engagement is more private thing and later the bride will say “heeey, I have my ring”. Here, oh my! I think in the party was about 200-300 people. The future bride and groom were standing in front of everyone and received their gifts (such as money and gold). The closer you are to the couple, the more you need to give. After that, most of the time, they danced Halay, a Turkish traditional dance. Also, they offered cake but no proper food. It was an experience in itself 😀

One Saturday,  I was overwhelmed by lots of things and I went by the seaside to take some time for myself. I think it was about 8 in the morning. There was one guy who wanted to sell me things but I wasn’t interested. In İzmir, you can see many disabled people who try to sell you things. I feel a bit sorry for them, but also, I take it as it is. I can’t save the whole planet, I need to think about myself also. Anyway, this guy started to talk to me and oh my freakiiing gooooood! He was talking so fast, but surprisingly, I understood him. Simple things, such as where are you coming from, what is your name, we can be friends, etc. I started to get tired of this because he was repeating the same things over and over again and my answers were all the same.

So, I decided to take the izban and to go to random place, wherever I felt like going. So, I ended up in Aliağa and Çandarlı. Both places were nice. Aliağa looks like it is for rich people. It seemed cleaned. It was funny because I was like “wooow, palms” but in İzmir, we also have palms. So, I understood I am so used to some things that I don’t even notice it anymore.

Because I miss nature and seaside (not beach but something similar) a lot, I took a bus and continued my day-trip to Çandarlı. I liked this place much more, it was like a small village. It has this old vibe and there is one castle. I don’t need much in order to be happy: surrounded by my people, nature, good food with a roof on top of my head. On this day, I enjoyed being by myself and away from the big city.

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