Monday, November 28, 2011

Time to pray

Inside mosque
Washing before praying
Muslims are supposed to pray five times per day. Before praying they should wash their feet, hands and face. In the picture you can see one washing place next to the entrance of one mosque. I did not see men having any towels to dry themselves. Women were not washing themselves in the same spot so I do not know what are their washing rituals. In mosque women had their own little praying section and men were praying in the main area of the mosque. While tourists could visit the mosque there were few people praying  but during the official praying time tourists were not allowed to enter. When entering the mosque women were advised to cover themselves and wear a scarf. Everybody also had to take off their shoes.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Döner kebab

Chicken döner kebab
Eating out in Turkey is cheaper than in Finland or in Spain so I have not been cooking much in Turkey. The cheapest option is chicken döner kebab what you can see in the picture and it costs 1,5 euros as in Finland I have to pay at least 5 euros. Beef döner kebab costs two times more than chicken döner kebab. They measure always 100 grams of meat to one kebab serving. Kebab serving includes salad, different vegetables depending on the place and serving can include also some french fries. Döner kebab means that is cut from the rolling piece of meat and I have not seen anybody using machine for cutting like in Finland. Kebab is also prepared in other way what is not döner kebab. The taste of beef kebab in Turkey is different than in Finland and Spain. In Finland we are also used to that kebab places sell also pizza but in Turkey all kebab places do not sell pizza.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Women's outfit

Before speaking to any Turkish person I assumed that in Turkey there are a lot of women who dresses up like the woman in the picture above. Turkish friends explained that it is not common that women in Turkey dress up to a black cape. Still before coming to Turkey I expected to see women dressed up in a black cape. In Ankara I have not seen any women dressed like the woman in the picture so dressing like that is not common at all. The picture is taken by Olga in Istanbul and there I could see few women dressed up in black cape but very few. Turkish friends explained that normally women dressed up in a black cape are not from Turkey.

Saturday, November 19, 2011


In Turkey people care even less about the parking than in Spain.In the picture you can see cars parked in the street against rules.You can see the sign and the yellow line what indicates that parking is not allowed. The street leads to the center of Ankara and it is about two kilometers away. On the road should be two lanes on both ways but the other lane is always occupied by illegally parked cars. This lane of illegally parked cars is at least everyday one kilometer long. These parked cars must make the traffic go much slower during the rush hours.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Mid-term exams

In Turkey during the semester you have mid-term and final exam in each subject in some cases you might have even two mid-term exams before the final exam. Now is time of the first mid-term exams and I had my first one today. During two weeks when mid-terms are held we do not have classes but in some faculties of Gazi university you have also classes even you have exams so there is not guideline what Gazi university is following. In the end of the semester we will have final exams.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Istanbul vs. Ankara


During the Bayram we did a five day trip to Istanbul. All the Turkish seem to love Istanbul and hate Ankara. One Turkish friend who lives in Ankara said that every time he visits Istanbul he loves it more. I have been asked several times that why did I choose Ankara and not Istanbul for my exchange destination because Istanbul would be much better place in their opinion.

Thursday, November 10, 2011


Hangia Sophia mosque
Last three days were national holidays called Bayram in Turkey. That mean that Turkish families get together and eat well. Therefore all the buses have been full. A lot of traffic in the highways and too many buses in the bus stations. Bayram has also a religious meaning. During the Bayram you sacrifice animals to the god and give some part of this meat to poor people. At least in university students take today and on Friday unofficial holidays even Bayram ended. Teachers advised us that no one is coming to the lessons so we do not have to come either

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


In the picture you can see round breads and in the background other kind of breads.  Round brown breads are typical in the Turkish breakfast and they are called simit. In the morning one simit costs about 50 cents as they are fresh. In the midday you can get three or four simits for the price of one and in the evening you can get even eight or nine simits for the price of one. There are many carts in the streets and there is nothing covering on the simit. Therefore it is not that hygienic.

Saturday, November 5, 2011


In Turkey tap water is not drinkable. One friend accidentally drank the tap water and he got sick. Therefore all the water you drink has to be bought in a bottle. The bottle in the picture is 19 liters so it is not very light. Luckily there are shops which are specialized for selling only water. The bottle costs 2 euros and they bring it to your home.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


In Ankara you do not need to call a taxi because you can see plenty of them in the streets. But if you do not see a taxi you can call a taxi just by pushing a taxi button. There are many buttons for calling a taxi. Taking a taxi ride is cheap. When you get in the price is one euro and after taking a 10 minute you have to pay about 4 - 5 euros. As taxi is cheap I have been taking taxi rides few times. I have noticed that in Turkey taxi drivers do not use a seat belt. Sometimes you can fasten your seat belt but there is not always seat belt available in the taxi. I have also taken ride with some Turkish friends and they did not use seat belt either.