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We will send regular newsletters to our members who have signed up for receiving it during the registration. In 'mymerhaba' newsletter, our editorial staff provides updates, with regard to any information related to places worth visiting, viewing, or otherwise worth knowing, for those who care to know more....

Molly from Galata

 Untitled Document

Thanks to Molly Farquharson for sharing her experience in Turkey with us.

Tell us about yourself
I have been living in Turkey for almost 7 years. My plan was to come for two years, but I fell in love with Istanbul. I have been teaching for about 20 years and taught in Japan for a couple of years.

What made you come to Turkey?
I came to be the director of a new language school. I left for a while to teach at a university here and then I returned to the language school a few years ago.

What do you do in your daily life?
Work! Entertain friends, write a bit, knit or do needlework, bake.

Family?
I have two grown children in the US. I am hoping they will come again for a visit next summer.

Can you compare your first days here with today?
I confess that I did not know anything about Turkey before I came. My learning curve was very high for a while, but now I feel I can handle anything-- and have. I often write about Istanbul for my friends abroad and have had about 60 people visit me.

Has living in Turkey influenced your approach to life?
I think it has made me more in touch with expressing my emotions, since Turks are generally very emotional. I really enjoy the daily adventures here.

Turkish language?
Orta*. I have taken a few classes here and there, but mostly I have acquired it as I needed it. I can express myself reasonably well and can get what I want. I think it is very rude of foreigners not to make an effort to learn the language of the culture they are living in.

Let's talk about the region you are living in?
I live in Galata. I love it, as it is still very Turkish, though it has changed a lot in the past couple of years. I hope it does not turn into Cihangir.

Have you traveled in Turkey? Tell us your discoveries
I have traveled the tourist circuit, Cappadocia, Antalya, Ege. it is an incredibly diverse place. I hope to get to the east next summer.

What is your preferred characteristic trait of Turks?
Turks are gregarious, friendly, generous and helpful. Some are not so nice, but I think it is cancelled out by the ones who are. As a sinle woman, I feel very safe in my neighbourhood, because I know that people will help me if I need it.

What was the annoying one?
Taxi drivers who rip off tourists. The touts in SultanAhmet who ask where I am from and invite me for tea. Men who ask if I am from Russia.

Turkish Cuisine?
Dangerously delicious! Though I have to admit that I have still not tried kokorec or iskembe yet...

Any suggestion to new comers to Turkey?
Be open to the people, try to learn the language (at least some basics), enjoy the rich cultural and historical heritage. This is not Kansas, Dorothy, so accept that things are done (or not done) differently here.

Any suggestion to people planning to visit your region?
I would suggest that anyone visiting Beyoglu get off Istiklal and on to the back streets. If you go to Galata, you should definitely stop for tea at the tea garden at the base of the tower. Walk as much as possible, because you will see more. Visit the Persembe Pazari, which is hardware heaven amongst medieval buildings. There is always something surprising to see, and you won't be able to see it from a car.

* Orta = Intermediate (editor's note)


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Latest comments about this article

 By bbaker  1.3.2009

Hi Molly, I am a friend of karen´s who contacted you today and I am going to be visiting with her in April. I am looking forward to meeting you, Karen was very impressed by your Turkey adventure. Being from Canada I am curious to know where you are from?

 By tigrrboxer  7.12.2004

I´m totally with you on the ”whereabouts from Russia are you?” crap - forget that I´m not from Russia; how dare they make assumptions about Russians?

 By Charly  6.12.2004

Hi Molly! I live in Galata too and really love the neighbourhood. I have my regular shopkeepers who understand my Turkish and feed me chocolate, tea etc. I have my ´little friends´ who impress me with their new English words and help me hunt down escaped kittens (what their parents make of it I´m not sure but the seker bayram sweets I gave them all must have won over the parents!). I used to live in Arnavutkoy but prefer Galata any day!

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