sevgi zor olmamali

degisim insana zor geliyor, yapilmadan da ilerlemek mumkun degil.
sevgi alis verisi de kendimizi sevmeden akmiyor.
bu sureci atlatmak icin kendimizi sevmek ve degisimden korkmamak gerek zannedersem.
bu da kabullenmekle basliyor.


a quote my friend Jana shared with me

"There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how valuable it is, nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open." - Martha Graham


what the Top End animals have taught me

the wildlife course has changed me and made me a better person. more aware than ever before. it was the last wildlife class this week and we were at a VET clinic where animals were treated, rehabilitated and released back to their homes once healed. it was a joy to see the frilly with the broken leg in our first class all good as new and ready to get out there and run again. we saw a juvenile kite and a young kookaburra. there was a sad tree snake that was severely dehyrdated and was put in water to get back to health. we saw wrak  the cockatoo greeting us as we walked in! all the wildlife have so much to contribute to our lives and their place is not in captivity, it's in the skies, on the ground, swimming and wading in waters. i have been lucky in being able to connect with them and get to know them better. it has made me love my life even more.


Irem is a  natural teacher. I had been doing yoga for years before taking Irem's classes but never really 'got it'.  With inspiration from Irem and lots of interesting breathing exercises, I finally feel that I am getting a lot out of my yoga practice and classes.  Very highly recommended! 


top end birds and reptiles

a cockatoo called Wrak came to visit us in class. she was gorgeous. curious too! it would waddle around the desks looking at everyone sideways, grab onto the side of the table, twist its head around and around, have a moment to preen a wing now and then, jump on the floor and nibble some feet...she was a cutie. i did not know they had air sacs under their skin and if ruptured they would heal themselves. they also have gaps in their skeleton to aid them in flight. i spoke to wrak in their language and it responded. i missed my cockateil, she was with us in Pakistan when i was growing up and lived a good 15 years before she passed.

yesterday it was reptile day. i adore turtles in the reptile familia. skinks too. large lizards i find fascinating. i have always been fearful of snakes but never disgusted or anything like that. i would just stay away if i saw one. they like basking in the sun and once when my group and i saw a black snake on our trail we changed our route and left it alone. touching one is a whole different ballgame though. something has definitely changed in me since i have been living in the Territory. first it made me sad that many people think a snake is best a dead snake, an attitude that needs to change. the reptile handler/ snake catcher had a few bags on the table that would move ominously when someone spoke in class. when brendan the snake catcher took the snakes out and asked us to handle them i could not stop myself. both were pythons, massive creatures. i touched the olive python and shivered. it was soft and smooth. when i held him under his neck and halfway down his length he was soft smooth and strong. unbelievable strength.
once i let the olive python go there was carpet python hanging out on my table checking everything out. he and i looked at each other for a long while. he sniffed me for around 20 minutes with his split tongue, it tickled. he went all over my bag, sniffed my legs, arms, hands, neck, he was one curious fella and did not leave my side until it was time to get bagged. he did not want to go in the bag at all.
i have to say i liked them. they were not venomous, one of them had been rehabilitated from an accident and the other was abandoned by their owner (patterns were not native to the Territory). these guys have a history just like us, they are trying to survive and live with us, and as long as we are respectful of their space we can continue to live in ours. i was hypnotized.

25% of snakes are venomous. okay the top ten posionous snakes are at the top end. yes yes. only 3% of them are truly fatal which comes down to 1.3 deaths per year in the top end. more deaths from smoking, more from shark attacks, more drunk driving deaths. snakes are getting bad rep is what i think!


iskender'in arkadaslari

iskender gibi bir kaplumbaga tanimiyorum. baska kaplumbagam olmadi zaten, ondan ismini iskender koymustum, tek ve guclu bir karaktere sahip olsun dedim. kaplumbagalarla olan bagimi anlatmam zor. 4 yasimda ilk bebe kaplumbagami denize biraktim, Karaci sahillerinde. o zamandan beri bu tatli yaratiklari ayri severim. Darwin'de flatback turtle dedikleri kaplumbagalar doguduklari yere gelip (bazen 30 sene sonra) ayni yerde yumurtalarini birakip gidiyorlarmis. her seferinde 70 tane yumurta, 70 tane bebe denize pitipiti kosuyorlar. bir sezonda her 2 haftada bir olan bir olay. bir tanesine sahit olmak mucizevi bir goruntuydu. yuzlerce insan, her yerde cocuk kayniyor ama herkes heyecanli ve nefesini tutuyor. her gruba bir minik verildi, yapmamiz gereken dogru yone yonlendirmek ve kus filan onu alip goturmemesi. izlerken ben agladim.



shaye has made my life in Darwin special. friends are not easy to make after your 30s... it's true! when you get going in your 30s you find yourself calling friends you have had for a while, potentially new ones come along and it takes work to build those friendships. that too if you have the time and motivation to put work into it. with shaye it was smooth and steady. she is stu's buddy and she was the first friend he had me meet when i came to Darwin last year. a year later here i was jumping into aussie footy, speedwalking along the coast, and watching us pump each other to stay motivated and to stay in the moment. she even tried to have me do community work but her work said no because of insurance issues. she is giving, thoughtful and puts others first which is a level of awareness that is hard to see in this day and age. we went to a psychic expo this past weekend. where else would a psychic expo be but in a travelodge in Darwin... we watched the solar eclipse, granted behind trees, through our phones while others had brought their welding helmets (!) and we have waded in secure lukewarm sea water with loud German teen boys. she also understands that me communicating with the fruit bats near her apartment is a lovely quality to have :P a friend who does not judge is a friend indeed.
she took a leap of faith and went to burning man this year, all in the name of change. i cannot stop but admire friends of mine who make a decision to change their lives and go ahead and do it. she is off to Melbourne next year and i am going to miss her dearly.


other inhabitants in Darwin

after Thailand i decided that if i was not working and still actively seeking i will exercise my brain cells by going to a class in the evenings. i found a course called 'wildlife in the Top End' and i signed up. i have been loving it simply because the people who have choosen to come are diverse and sweet; and the rannger brings in a surprise every week depending on the category we are focusing on. last week was a frilled neck lizard who was healing from a broken leg. her cast was orange and it matched the orange spots on her neck. yesterday it was a baby possum healing from stitches and she was gorgeous. we held her to our chest to keep her warm in a very cool classroom, i could feel her breathing. another 3 weeks and more animals to come. i always feel energized after this class, living here has been eye-opening to the wonders of this planet. the more i learn, the more there is to learn.


the new honeymoon concept

we just spent our honeymoon in West Raileh Beach, southern tip of Thailand, near Krabi, with close friends. the best idea we have come up with since our idea to get married and move to Australia! our friends came from istanbul and sydney, five different nationalities, under one roof. sea kayaking, rock climbing, up 1237 steps to see a massive Buddha in Tiger Temple, watching sunsets everyday from our porch were just some of the highlights. smiling Thai, powerful food, cozy company, bats and squirrels just brought everything into alignment.


hayat arkadasligi

hayatimizda bir cok hikayelerimize sahit olan ve bizimle birlikte bu yolculugu yapan arkadaslarimiz olmustur. benim oldu. bu hikayelerin yaratilisinda kucukken programlanmis kaliplarin icinde buyudugumuz icin bir cok hikayemiz tum potansiyelimizi yansitmamis olabilir. 4 yasimdayken ve bunu cok iyi hatirliyorum, babamin arkadasi bana buyuyunce ne olacaksin bakayim sormustu, ve ben evlenecegim demistim. bu soyledigim cok naif ve komik bir cevap olabilir ama bu programlanma o minik yasimda da beynimde gezinen bir dusunceymis. 30 yaslari guzel bir donem cunku dunyanin cok yalin bir yer olmadigini artik anladim, kendimi iyicene tanimis oldum, ve oldugum gibi olmaya sectigimde bunun bir mucadele olacagini biliyordum. ama bu mucadele icsel bir mucadele ve bunun icin inanc ve azim gerektiriyor. istedigimiz gibi yasamaya sectigimizde buna kolay kolay izin verilmeyecek, yargiyla karsi karsiya olacagiz ve boyle bir ortamda secimler zorlasacak. programdan degil yuregimizin dogru hislerine dogru adimlar atilacak. demek istedigim 30 yaslarimda evlilik bana gore olmadigina karar vermistim. arkadaslarim hayatim boyunca yanimdalardi, isimi seviyordum, annemle olan iliskim harikaydi, baska neye ihtiyacim vardi ki? iliski her kadin ve erkek ister ama etrafimizda super ornekler yoktu. surekli bir drama, bir kalp kirilmalar, bunu yapti onu dedi, centilmen olan adam yok gibiydi. bir kac sene once amerikali arkadasim kocasiyla istanbul'a tasindiginda bir iliski ve bir hayat arkadasi nasil olur onu 3 sene izleme firsati olunca o zaman bende derinden aynisindan istedim. ama bunu bile istemek bir mucadeleydi ve bir karar. karar su ki istedigim hayat arkadasi benim en iyi dostum ve laklak yapmaktan cekinmeyecegim, korku programlarim tetiklendiginde de paylasabilecegim bir insan olacakti. ve eger olmazsa kendi yolumda mutlu olmaya secmeye devam edecektim yalniz olsamda. evlilik bir sosyal etiket ve etiketlerden hoslanmam. ama bir iliskiye bir takim arkadasligi ve hayatimiz boyunca yolculugumuzu birlikte yapacak kalitede bir insan ariyorsak o zaman zaten kendi potansiyelinize gore yasiyorsaniz o kisi yolculugunuza katilir. asil test katilmak istedigi zaman siz izin verecekmisiniz.


yoga on skype

skype yoga for the first time last night with my awesome group in istanbul was a great experience. after a teen helped us all get connected and that too we had to do without video we did a good ole session as though we were together in one room. i miss my yogini partners and i am grateful to them and technology for bringing us together. may the skype-ing continue!


alismak, baglanmadan

yeni bir hayata alisma donemi kolay olmayacagini biliyordum ama bu kadar zor olacagini da tahmin etmiyordum. unutmusum...cekilen izdirap, baglanmanin getirdigi endiseler, hep unutuyorum. kendimi gelistirmek icin boyle bir yol neden sectigimin cevabini da biliyorum, alisik olmadigim seylerle mucadele etmeden yasamak benim en buyuk zorlugum oldugu icin kendimi birakmaya ogretmek icin yapiyorum. cunku her seferinde- pakistan'dan ayrilirken, amerika'dan ayrilirken,ankara'yi arkamda birakirken, ve bu sefer istanbul'a veda ederken- sifirdan yaratip birakmayi seviyorum, yep yeni bir heyecan, kendimi yeniden kesfetme firsati, ve yillar icinde neler degistigini yalin bir gozle bakabiliyorum. hic birseyi varsaymamayi ogreniyorum...yeniden. her degisiklikte is arama kosusturmasi...evet is bulmadan atiliyorum degisime. baya delice. ev duzenini kurmak, uykumu alabilmek, tutsuler yakip evimin kokusunu yerlestirmek, komsularla tanismak, mahallede yuruyup ne var ne yok nerden ne alabilirim, hangi duvara ne asilir, bunlarin hepsi zaten yerlesiyor ilk ay icinde. ama duygusal destegi veren aile ve arkadaslarim skype, tango, viber, whatsapp gibi seyler evet bir cok seyi kolaylastiriyor ama uzun suren alisma donemi burda. onlarin yoklugu. o kadar ozluyorum ki arkadaslarimi...geldigimden beri herkesle konustum, gordum agladim...yinede ozluyorum. o kadar cok baglanmisim yani. yoga'nin en buyuk dersi de baglanmadan yasamak. iyi ki tatli bir esim var, yoksa turkiye'ye ilk geldigim aylarda tam olarak 9 ay sadece egsersiz icin kostum, kitap okudum ve telefonda konustum. evet degismisim :) simdi yuzuyorum, farkli yemekler pisiriyorum, yoga dersleri veriyorum, ev projelerini tamamliyorum ve resim cekiyorum. eylul sonu yagmur sezonu baslayacak...8 ay. onun alisma sureci nasil olacak onu gorecegiz.


shifting energies in a home

i love renewing things around the home and office to freshen up my world, and yes it invites new energies too. during mercury retrograde throwing and giving away what hasn't been used or does not work and cannot be repaired was done with success. now with a big move to a brand new environment, stu and i decided to start making a new home with what there was already plus a few extra pieces. we ripped out the old crusted paint off the deck chairs and table, sanded it to a baby's bottom smoothness and re-painted it a driftwood colour that has brought out the grains in the teak. just gorgeous! and it has lit up our terrace and therefore our view.
the benches stu got made for the wedding, we converted those into a library, we have so many books and pictures to put up, we sanded, dusted, wiped and put on a hardy coat of polyurethane....and now we have a beautiful library in our upcoming study. doing projects together and having zone out time TOGETHER tightens our relationship. its the yoga during daily life, the breathwork on the mat that can be brought to your loved ones that makes yoga a lifestyle. the mantras one learns in yoga school or the one that your guru gives, that's not the only way to enlightenment, it's the love that you generate by just saying 'i love myself' has the same effect. stu does not do yoga but he said this yesterday 'this chair needed some love and painting it is giving it attention'. this too is yoga.


connection for life

getting married and embracing the committment to grow together is a sacred vow. we make that vow with our closest friends and it is a default committment with our family members. we shared our vows at sunrise on Casuarina beach in Darwin Australia on 28th july a few days before the full moon. waking up at 4.30 am was no big deal because one does anything for the person they adore and the view was breathtaking. here is my vow to Stu: you are the person i have been waiting for; you are my best friend; you are my teacher in love and loving; you are my example for integrity; it's time to begin our journey together; i am thrilled to grow together with you; i am surrendering to the flow of love between us and ready to live the path we create together; i love you honey


my new home

my first week in Darwin has been pretty full. putting aside the undertaking of leaving Turkey, a place i called home for 10 and a half years, saying goodbye was not easy. to be detached is not an easy feat for anybody...but when there is support and belief that change is ultimately a good thing, the process has more flow. i have been doing my 'youth turns' as i call it, the tibetan ritual of youth. joined a yoga class with Sanjit Das at a scout warehouse in Darwin and did a hour and a half of pranayama. learned something that i thought was reviving- he had us do kapalbhatti facing south doing one exhalation per direction, left right up and down. he had us do it for around 2 minutes starting with the intention of honoring our breath in all directions. it was good fun and i felt great. Stu and i went to deckchair cinema to watch 'Yogawoman' an inspiring documentary about how women have shaped the yoga industry in the past 40 years. deckchair is an outdoor cinema where people can have vegetarian food and listen to the trees rustle while watching a movie on a massive screen. Stu at one point turned to me and said 'Don't panic, there's a possum' and wo and behold there he was big and furry with a long thin tail shuffling about through the deckchairs looking for a nibble. over the weekend Darwin had a Beer Regata where people collect their beer cans throughout the year and make a functional boat. pretty awesome! some make it some sink but it's a fun festival by the beach and folks come from all over. i loved watching the thong throwing contest, basically people throw their flip flops real hard and the one that goes the farthest wins a hefty prize of 250 aussie dollars! i am enjoying the atmosphere of taking it easy here, such a turnaround after istanbul! going to go for a quick swim to get the blood flowing.


After years of knowing that I needed to begin working out and becoming healthier, I finally decided to attend a free yoga class at my school. I had some knowledge about yoga from other classes that were also started for teachers, but no one prepared me for the likes of lovely Irem. I can honestly say that I realized for the very first class that I had finally found the way to get me moving in the right direction. Irem’s kind and forgiving attitude coupled with her vast knowledge of both yoga and the human body make a great combination. She explains every move before we actually do it. Frequently asking questions like “Do you have trouble with your ........? Well then you should try it this way” have made me feel secure in the class. I am not afraid of getting hurt and am actually motivated to try new and more difficult positions, learning to push my limits in a safe environment. After each class, the relaxed and content feeling I have is hard to describe. I am now much more physically active these days and I know that Irem’s class was catalyst that I needed. What better testimony can I give than to say that I have never missed a class? mws


kundalini yoga in new york

i went to kundalini yoga classes while i was in new york. in a fabulous tall building in Manhattan. everyone was in white, the guru was in town for teacher training so classes were full.

i started doing kundalini yoga last year in Istanbul. the reason why i love it so much is because the whole session concentrates on kriyas, cleansing through the fire breath. and with specific and repititious movements coupled with the fire breath one awakens the kundalini and divine awareness. the awareness is equivalent to what one feels after an entire day in a yoga workshop except the session does not go over 90 minutes. it is an intense spiritual and physical workout that is not comparable to any treadmill or pilates workout.

and after kundalini yoga class everything feels lighter and takes on an invisible glow.


darwin, oz

after istanbul darwin is a relief. the temperatures never change, the only season there is is the dry and wet season. this time around the wet season with its' thunderstorms, sheet lightning and lightning that "crawls" was absolutely hypnotic. and then twin rainbows...just magical.



i missed india so much in bali. the offerings in front of every shop and home, the scooters weaving through traffic, the rains flooding the streets, the breeze that follows the rain...and the sunsets in the tropics never disappoint me.


kundalini dans ediyor

dun bombastik bir kundalini dersine gittim. bir kac aydir yogi arkadasim ozgur'le bu derslere katiliyordum. sivananda yoga'dan sonra kundalini yoga hocasi olmak isterim. insani oyle bir salliyor ki, gercekten varlik oldugumuzu ve insan kiyafeti giydigimizi fark ediyorum. ders sonrasi ve ertesi gun dusunmek yorumlamak uymak gibi otomatige bagladigim seyler birden yok oluyor ve beynimin koseleri bosaliyor! o bosalma hissi iste yasanmasi gerek, irem degil ruh ozgur bir sekilde lay lay lay dans ediyor.