So, today was a Turkish day. My mother and I headed down to Boston for some hardcore college touring and interviewing (Thanks, Brandeis!) and then off to Packard's Corner to indulge in Turkish delight. We went to a fantastic restaurant called Saray and then off to the market. I realize now that I should have taken pictures of the market and what-not, but I guess I'm simply a bad tourist. I'll have to work on this... There's also the Turkish Cultural Center which sadly was closed. The shopkeeper told us about how they have Turkish movie nights and Turkish coffee nights and Turkish classes. Would that I had heard of this earlier I might be better prepared!
Our waitress at Saray is from Ankara and she knows where I'll be living! She is going back a couple of days before I leave and she said that I can come visit her and meet her family. She also says she's going to kidnap me to go to a Turkish wedding. When we went to the market it was really exciting because I was able to identify different foods for my mom and pronounce things (which is my favorite part of Turkish) and translate random words that I eavesdropped from other people's conversations. I tried to talk to the cashier in Turkish but evidently I'm not exactly up to par yet.
So here's a picture of the random Turkish deliciousness I bought. I got hot red pepper (acı kırmızı biber), halva (tahin helvası), aşure mix, two bars of Turkish Nestle chocolate (which, in my opinion, is far better than any American chocolate ever, simply on principle. It lacks a certain chalky quality which makes it exceedingly amazing.) in dark chocolate with pistachios (fıstıklı) and milk chocolate with hazelnuts (findıklı), grape leaves for making sarma, currants (kuş üzümü), and delicious cookies to have with my çay.
So last Monday my host brother friended me on Facebook and today my host mom did too. My host brother's name is Ilgaz and he will be an exchange student to Brazil. He leaves about 5 days after I get there and he seems really nice. Ilgaz said he'd take me around Ankara and introduce me to his friends so that I'll know some teenagers my age, even if they don't actually go to my school. I'm hoping to be able to email them more or maybe even Skype with them (now wouldn't that help me work on my Turkish?)