ankara'da patlayan kararlar

karla birlikte temiz hava ama bir de soguk ayaz vardi. ankara'ya her gittigimde istanbul'a yerlestigim icin sevinyorum. suyu gormeye ve her yol ustunde tarihi eser unutulmus ya da restore edilmis farketmez gormus olmak icimi besliyor. ondan da ankara'da 2 gun gecirdikten sonra gecmisimdeki yasanan ve yasadigim her dusundugumde beni uzen seylere veda etmeye karar verdim.

herkes karar vermek durumunda kalir. her kararin arkasinda varmak istendigi nokta vardir. o noktayi gormedigin surece karar karar olmaz. niyetten baslar bir karar. ben coktan beri niyet etmistim. aslinda niyet onemli bir karar asamasi. iste ankara'da o niyetim somutlastti ve karara donustu.

istanbul akista olman gereken bir sehir. o kadar dinamik ki her saat farkli bir durumla karsilasman mumkun. istanbul'da hersey mumkun. ankara'da ise akista olmak icin biraz eylem gerektiriyor, sanki verimli olmak icin daha fazla bir motivasyon gerekiyor. arti ankara tamamen toprak bir yer oldugu icin bence orda koklenmek kolay ve bu gidisimde yerimde duramazsam da zihnim biraz durabildi ve istanbul'un zoraki akisindan uzaklasip uzaktan kendime bakabildim. ara sira bunu yapmakta fayda var bence.

ee kararlar nediiirr? iste orda spesifik olamayacagim ama onemli olan mutlu olma karari ve mutluluk icin sinirlarimi koruma karari. istanbul'a sogolsun ermek nasil olaylardan ogrenip cikmak ve etkilenmemek ise, sinirlarimi korumak etkilenmemek amacli verdigim bir zihin programlanmasi. eski bir kararimin yenilenmesi ve patlamasi sayilir. bende birsey patlamadan olmuyor yani :)


Going into a “Zen situation”

Here’s what I have been upto (my list)

Movers bringing furniture and forgetting some in the truck (the truck left for Ankara and we were left with a room of table corpses- tables without legs)
Our Project manager trying to meet needs (even one where she was asked to bring glue to paste the carpet where the cable box was being installed)
Security setting up system and materials missing
Electricians drilling and cabling
Fax and photocopier getting installed
Cleaners trying to do detailed work
Phones getting hooked up and me getting trained
IT system and Turk Telekom communications (can’t even complete the sentence because it is such a black hole of a subject)
All through this I was translating until I couldn’t form my own sentences

Alain (my boss) says to me “I really want you to go into a Zen situation now”. Is it possible? Was it possible?

Vinyasa Ashtanga Mysore style is the way to Zen in circumstances like these. I can do kapalbhatti for a bit and find myself floating in 5 minutes but this is something else. We do ujjayi breathing for an hour and half through surya namaskar and all the asanas. It’s a crash course into feeling good if one completely surrenders. One definitely needs a foundation of yoga to do it. The heart does not beat any faster, the ujjayi keeps it at optimal level and the white muscles just give way. With 4 classes I can see improvement at different levels. Sivananda holds poses long, does the movements slowly and has sections within its practice. Vinyasa Ashtanga adds a twist by incorporating ujjayi throughout and even though one is in continuous motion it looks like one is watching a movie in slow motion. I love the style.

And I am not giving it up.


hamams in istanbul

it has taken me almost no time at all to become a lover of hamams. it is i believe a tradition of bathing that every human being should at some point in their lives be indulge themselves in. i got aquainted with too late in life but still...it's never too late is it?

ankara's cebeci hamam was my first ever and i went with my aunt's friend. it was a huge deal for them. they took a huge bag full of their bathrobes, hair dryer, creams of all kinds, basically their entire bathroom. you don't have to take all that. i simply learned it was a big deal to go to the hamam. i know way too many people who are scared of going. i don't understand. i think it is the place where one can be reborn.

thankfully my mother used to exfoliate me when i was a kid. i remember. it is not easy to be exfoliated if your skin is not used to it. anyway it was that first hamam experience that won me over. i decided to pursue this love on my own. karacabey hamam in ankara became my place of frequent visits. i had friends who loved it as much as i did and i learned i could read the paper without it getting wet...

when i moved to istanbul besides the obvious priorities like finding a place to live, a job and a grocery store with 0% fat milk, i was actively searching for the perfect hamam- for myself. cemberlitas is on my "pretty good" list and haven't found another to top it. i have been to small ones, really old ones, stinky ones, forgotten ones, rip off ones and i still come back to cemberlitas in sultanahmet.

early in the morning before 0930 is the best time. the entire hamam to yourself. the dome, the marble platform, the mornng light through the small holes in the dome, the clear echo of the copper bowl against the marble and nobody else. the emptiness after being inside for a mere half hour and the peace over you once your bath is done. i don't want to shower after a bath like that. showering is so... incomplete.

and yes the women who exfoliate (called "natir")smell weird. it is like that EVERYWHERE. but that should not stop anyone from going. just do it.


old books

old books, yellowed pages, musty smell. i have been seeking old books and i had no idea i was until scott said the book "being there" that i had bought at a christmas sale for 3 liras was actually the first edition. it was also a library book. today and for the past few days i have been reading "uncle tom's cabin" that i had brought back from pakistan years ago to read again. printed in the early 80s. i was only 6 some years old when i got that book. i ordered online from betterworld books and got old library book versions.

i love it. my library is getting converted into wornout hardback editions. it's becoming exciting for me. and i have only just discovered this.

the other day jon my friend in cambridge texted me saying he found a book from 1893. wow. it's truly amazing when i find different things about myself i hadn't known about before. it could just be istanbul and the air that inspires one to push themselves just a little bit, in whichever direction. i can begin to see my fascination with shoe shiners for example...more about that when i trace its roots.