Sunday, January 29, 2012


Kilitbahir castle
Horse of Troy
Sitting on the ruins of Troy
I made a little trip to the western coast of Turkey with some friends. First destination was Çanakkale where has been remarkable battle in the First World War. Therefore there were graves, weapons, castles, bunkers and other things related to the war to see. Nearby about 20 minutes car ride from Çanakkale is also historical city Troy. Almost everybody knows the story how the city of Troy was conquered with the help of wooden horse. The horse in the picture is the horse what was used in the movie Troy (2004) starring Brad Pitt and Orlando Bloom. There is another horse where the ruins of the Troy are and third in one gas station between Çanakkale and Troy.

Thursday, January 26, 2012


Street view from Izmir
I have told already that traffic in Turkey is dangerous. I have seen cars using reverse many times in busy streets. If driver misses the street where he should have turned he just switches the gear to the reverse and goes backwards until he can take the turn he missed. On Tuesday I was witnessing so far the most dangerous reversing. I was in a bus from Çanakkale to Izmir and on the three line highway bus driver missed the ramp. Professional bus driver decided to use the reverse to go backwards in a highway where cars drive 100 km/h to take the turn he missed. I saw police car passing us but no action was taken by the police. I am surprised how professional bus driver risked 50 people that way.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Spicy food with ayran

Adana kebab
Generally Turkish food is more spicy than Finnish food. There are of course more spicy and less spicy options when you eat outside. In the first month I had little problems with my belly but nothing serious. After first month my belly has been OK. Turkish people drink ayran with spicy food and I have to say that after drinking ayran spices are not burning much in your mouth. Ayran is like natural yogurt but more liquid.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Style of Turkish women

Women with scarf
After three months I saw for the first time a woman dressed up in a black cape in Ankara. Most of the Turkish women dress up in the style what you can see in Spain or in Finland. I noticed that in Turkey women paint their lips with a red lipstick. In Spain or in Finland it is much more popular to use lip gloss. My estimation is that in the street picture you can see about 10% of the Turkish women wearing a scarf and a long coat like the women in the picture. Women with scarves do not tend to wear any make up.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Snow in Ankara

View from my balcony
It has snowed few times in Ankara but snow did not stay on the ground longer than one day. Last days snowed a lot and snow has stayed already few days. In Gazi university exams are now finished and holidays started that means one month holiday. Lessons will start again in the 20th  6th of February. Many Turkish students come to Ankara to study and for the holidays they have returned to their home cities.
(Edit: starting time of lessons)

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Where are you from?

Genclik park
People recognize in Turkey that I am a foreigner therefore they ask often where are you from. When you ask from a Turkish where are you from they will answer you the home city of their parents even they have never lived in that city. It is strange because I would not answer the home city of my father or mother. My answer would be Kuopio because I have grown up there.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


In Turkey I have been living with two Spanish flatmates and we go often together to meet our Spanish friends somewhere and ask how are they. This have helped me to understand why Spanish people arrive late. Usually it is not because they are busy. It is because they expect also everybody else to arrive late. If we are meeting in the street to go somewhere arriving 15 minutes late is OK but if you arrive half an hour late it is considered bad. If somebody have invited to their home arriving one hour late is not a problem.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Cup of tea

Turkish like to drink tea a lot. Tea is not actually served in a cup. In the picture you can see that tea is served in a glass what has a particular shape. When the tea is served they do not give a tea bag like in Finland. The tea herbs are but in the tea pot and tea is poured to your glass from the tea pot. You do not get any herbs to your glass. Tea is always served very hot and when I have had a tea with Turkish people they have been always able to finish their glass before I am even able to touch my glass. I do not understand how they can drink so hot tea without burning themselves.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Dormitory for men in Turkey

Amer in front of the dormitory
In Turkey many university students are living in student dormitories. Living in a student dormitory must make student life different compared to living in a flat with flatmates therefore I asked my friend Amer to write how it is to live in a student dormitory in Turkey. Amer is from Bosnia and he has been studying Turkish with me in Gazi Tömer. This post is longer than normal posts in the blog but I liked what he wrote.

Monday, January 2, 2012

New year

Happy new year 2012. We went outside in the midnight but we did not see any fireworks and even before the moment we could not hear fireworks. As in Finland you can hear fireworks from six in the evening the whole night. When I was 11 years old I was shooting fireworks like most of the children in Finland. Maybe people are shooting their own fireworks out of the city center in Turkey as shooting can be prohibited in the city center.

Today, right after the new year starts the final exam period what takes two weeks. That means that many Turkish students did not celebrate the new year because they were studying for the final exams.