Making the transition

Over the past three weeks, I’ve taken six flights between four states, two countries, been in three continents, and stayed at five different houses. But I made it. I arrived in Istanbul around five yesterday evening and started work at eight this morning. I’m a bit jet lagged and actually quite exhausted, but I love it. I’ve only been here a day and I can already tell that Istanbul is going to be amazing. Ok, so recap of the last day or so.

After staying with friends in North Carolina, I boarded my plane to DC and was able to meet up with a couple more friends in the airport. After realizing I’d read my ticket wrong and almost missed my flight, I was able to see how fantastic Turkish Arilines really is. Despite the fact that I flew economy, they fed me like I was a starving child and tended to my every need. Not to mention that I was lucky enough to get an aisle seat and had plenty of leg room and free movies. They also handed out toiletry bags containing a travel toothbrush and toothpaste, eye cover, lip balm, socks, and earplugs. I was dreading my 10 hour flight, but I can honestly say that I’ve never had such a pleasant flight (and I’ve flown more than I care to remember).

Getting a visa and getting through customs went pretty smoothly, as did finding my luggage and exchanging money. I was able to find my roommate without too much difficulty and we made our way back to the Asian side of Istanbul. The flat is beautiful and the area we live in is busy, but not extremely loud. Though no air conditioning in August isn’t exactly luxury living, but it’s manageable, especially since fall is approaching.

Once we got home, I managed to unpack everything last night (not that I brought very much) and get a whole (barely) four hours of sleep before waking up to catch the bus to work. Though, apparently I could have gotten an extra hour of sleep, because they forgot to tell me that the bus is coming an hour later every day this week. So after almost missing the bus, I finally made it to school on the European side. (Yes, I’ll be traveling between two continents five days a week.)

The school is amazing. Not just the building, but the people and the way they run things. I’m super excited about not only what I get to teach, but the liberty I’m given on how to teach it. More updates on teaching to come later as I learn more about the school. However, they did let me take a nap because I was so obviously jet lagged, which definitely put them on my friends list.

When I came home, I managed to go to the market on my own and get groceries, despite my very limited Turkish. However, learning Turkish is definitely my next endeavor. Hello, Rosetta Stone.


3 thoughts on “Making the transition

  1. Hello there, and welcome to Turkey!

    I really hope you keep sharing your experiences because I think there are a lot of people who would be interested to connect with you on this topic.

    I have a little website/blog designed to help English teachers find jobs in Turkey – – and we are often contacted by people planning to make a move here from abroad for the first time.

    They always have so many questions that I thought your blog would be really useful for them. You have actually gone and done it! Congratulations on moving to a different country and I hope it really works out for you.

    Perhaps I some point I could post one of your articles on my site for you.

  2. Hello Mike! I definitely plan to continue sharing the experiences. The goal is to post at least once a week. I checked out your website and it seems super helpful. Luckily, I already knew someone here, but there are always things that come up and would have been nice to know about before I left. I’m sure we would be able to collaborate somehow.

    I’m currently living with a Turk and another American; we’re all English teachers. I’ll see if they have any helpful hints as well.

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