classes


Just a quick update on my sculpture progress. Pretty happy with how it’s coming out!

~Han

So my neighbor, who yelled at me for showering before 10AM a few weeks ago, also gave me a dirty look for trying to shower at noon today. At this point….I couldn’t care less what she thinks. I’m going to shower when I want to. I’m not the one leaving dirty, used dishes in the kitchen for a week plus at a time.

In Sculpture today, I learned I am not really allowed to use my hands to sculpt. I have to beat the clay into place with a stick. Since I’m sculpting a torso, I sometimes feel like I am spanking her!

No one else in the class is doing the torso, and I’m not particularly sure why. Everyone else is doing the man’s head. It’s rather interesting.

Kitty was on the roof again.

The professor got her down.

She’s very sweet, but yowls for attention alllll the time when on the ground as well! We are calling her PITA. I’ll let you guess why.

Whenever I am confident that I can say something in Turkish, the woman at the reception is the only one who can speak English. So when I try to struggle through pronouncing something, she switches to English, haha.

I went to Akife and Mustafa’s for the night tonight. Professor Cynthia Paces is coming tomorrow and needs help getting from the airport to campus. The man at METU that she has been in touch with just isn’t exactly the brightest crayon in the box. So she’s pretty confused.

Akife asked me some very interesting questions tonight about my experience here since I’ve been here for a month. Mustafa and I discussed differences in sociality between home and here, and how learning it makes relating to people in the future so much easier. He also mentioned that since by room is of the more expensive variety, it is likely that the girl is from a higher class and simply expects others to do whatever she wants for her. Which I totally believe.

I discovered these vaguely cheese flavored sticks today that remind me of salty-type pocky. They excite me. And are quite yummy.

I was also informed that I’ve lost weight. I’ve been eating a LOT! But….I’ve also been walking much more than I am used to. That is probably why. =)

~Han

On Sunday I did literally nothing but sit around, eat and study. P:

Monday I had class, and I don’t think I did anything before or after that either.

Today, I had sculpture class in the AM, a Turkish test in the PM, and choir at night. This is the Sculpture building room. We have our own building, and it’s kind of fun! =) I started actually applying clay to my sculpture today, which was awesome. They also removed the leaking bath, so I didn’t have to stand in a puddle of water today 😀 Huge help in keeping warm!!

This is the sculpture I am trying to reproduce for my class P: It’s so relaxing and fun to start working on the sculpture.

I believe the sculpture building was one that just happened to be sitting around un-used here. There is another building that isn’t used, and apparently one was demolished.

After class I got to do a single load of laundry…..that then got locked in the machine. Oy, lol terrible luck!

In choir, we’re learning 2 new songs this month and 1 in April. The other choir did a 4-part version of Bebek that we are going to try to learn. :3 Pretty much it….

~Han

My choir’s concert was today. It took place in the “Architecture Amphitheater,” which I was expecting to just be an auditorium. No, this was a legit amphitheatre. So cool! It reminded me a little of the Little Theatre in HCRHS…but so much cooler.

The American choir came and practiced with us on the 2 songs we would sing together, then on their own. Then they went to get food. I hung around to try to talk to them some. But they were completely disinterested in anyone except the people they came with. There were 2 or 3 METU students who were accompanying them around, acting as translators and such. They were the only non-US people that the students really cared to talk to. Only one spoke with me…to ask me how she could buy water from the kantin. I was really disappointed. I kept trying to tell myself that they were just tired but…couldn’t really bring myself to fully believe it, you know? It was beyond just being tired but reacting to things around you. They wouldn’t talk to me when I tried to start conversation, and would only sit with and talk to the people they came with. =\

Claire, Charlotte and Nina came to see my concert though! 😀 They took pictures for me, lucky you! ❤ Gokce Gokdogan also came, and it was so wonderful to see her! I didn’t get to talk to her for but a few moments, since she had to get back to campus before her curfew.

There was a really huge crowd here actually! It was awesome. I’m still trying to figure it out. =) Two composers were here, one that composed a song we sang with the other choir and one that did a song that the other choir sang on their own.

So this is the American choir in their performance-gear. They had some really lovely songs with great harmonies and melodies and sounded fairly good overall.

And this is our choir, in all our loveliness…and I still think we sounded better 😉

I found out that our director, Haser Tek, is actually a famous Turkish tenor in the opera. He doesn’t have a falsetto, and has a really lovely voice. I do enjoy listening to him, and I’m usually not a tenor-type of person!

And this is all of us together.

After all that was over, I still had to get my second series of the rabies vaccine. But it was like 9:30 by that point, and I hadn’t heard from Gokcer about it all day (I had texted him in the AM). So Claire offered to go with me. I went back to my room and found my hospital papers, changed into pants (that skirt was cowld!) and went to the lady by the desk. Since it was 10:15 by this point and I wasn’t sure how long it would take, I wanted to let her know where I would be so I wouldn’t have to sign in on the tardy paperwork. And I actually told her in Turkish that I was going to the hospital and she understood and I was so happy!!! So proud of me. So I went and met Claire outside the gate by a bar called “Drunk.” It was pretty funny xD I hear it’s actually a decent place? Will check it out some time.

We caught a taxi outside the bar and I gave him the paper with the name of the hospital. He didn’t quite know where, so he took us in the cab and drove around calling and texting people to find out, hahaha. He pulls up to a hospital that isn’t the one we needed, and asks for directions. So we get to the right one, and when I go to pay, he told me (in Turkish) that he would wait. Claire and I got out and went to the security guy to let him know where we were going, who gave us directions. I was so happy (again) that I was able to say “Biliyorum” for the first time, which means “I know”! So proud of me, hahahaha. Went and got the shot, which was really easy. I think I’m beginning to not be phased by them, so long as I don’t look at it, haha. Either that or the nurses here are really good. It’s funny though, two shots are in my arm with 3 moles, each right next to one of the moles. I hope the third is next to the last mole, because that would just make me laugh.

We hopped the cab back to ODTU (seriously just wrote TCNJ) and I decided to go with the girls to Beypazari tomorrow. Very exciting, should be an ultra fun time.

~Han

Had to change my sculpture class schedule. Initially was Wednesday 1-5 and Thursday 1-5, but my Turkish professor changed her course so we have an hour on Thursday from 12:30-1:30. Soooo….since Sculpture is completely across campus, I changed to Wed 1-5 and Thurs 9-12. More cold. More kitty. More wet feet. xD; I’ve decided I don’t care about the shirt and sweatshirt I wear to class, it’s getting clay on it. I am also getting a pair of cheap white/gray pants, so you can’t see the clay on them and I can wipe my hands on them! =P And considering trying to find a cheap coat. But the pants should help a lot.

Quiet day overall though. We learned more verb conjugation in Turkish, and how to negate verbs. However………….I did sign up for laundry last night. And I COMPLETED IT! I feel SO accomplished, I have clean pants…so happy lol. There’s only really time in the 3 hours (you sign up for a 2 hour shift, and there’s an hour between yours and the next one) to do 1 load of laundry, maybe 2 if you’re extra super lucky -cough sign up for 8am cough-. But I only have a little for a second load, since I threw my socks in with the darks. Now most of them are a shade of brown but….I really don’t care too much right now. 😀 I have clean clothing. I’m so thrilled. Quite literally, I took a dictionary upstairs with me and looked up almost every word on the machines so I could understand what to do xD; Even then it wasn’t all QUITE right, but that’s okay. Clean clothes. Yum. ❤

Saw this and it made me happy, not sure why. Pawprints like that are actually in many places on campus. There was a cat by my dorm when I got back tonight. A guy was trying to pet it but it seemed scared of him. So I called the cat to me and was stroking it, so he could pet it. He started rubbing it like a dog, and being way too rough. I can’t blame the cat for trying to get away. But then he went after it, and grabbed it by the scruff of its neck and took it to some girl. I don’t know why he did that, but it just made me upset. I won’t do that again for another person. I don’t want animals to be treated like that. I feel like the people on campus seem to think animals are just things to be toyed with, they don’t care that it’s a living, breathing creature. It makes me really sad and upset. I think the way animals are treated and thought of here is something I am going to have the most trouble dealing with here.

This sculpture is by the DEVRIM stadium. It was explained to me that it stands for the students who have gotten a CC in their engineering (?) course. Which is somewhere around a 70% to us =P Every professor grades differently though…some of them have a grading scale that truly runs the gamut of 0-100%, which is very interesting and seems to make more sense to me.

Gotta pay my tuition tomorrow…and figure out how I’m going to get the next shot for rabies, not sure what to do there. I have to meet up for the concert at 2PM…we’re probably practicing some, and then we’re going to dinner with the American choir. The concert starts at 7. I hope one of my friends come, I kind of wanted to see if I could get it recorded. We’ll see what happens!

~Han

My sculpture class started today. It runs from 1PM to 5PM on Wednesdays (as well as other hours during the week.) I’m not sure you can call it a “Sculpture class.” It’s more like “sculpting in the freezing cold.” xD We arrived at the ceramics room, where we are assigned to have class, and the entire sculpture side of the room was GONE. It was so strange. So two/three/four/three/two (at various times people left xD) of us students stood around waiting for about a half hour before the professor showed up. He then informed us that the class was moving to a place across campus, really close to my dorm actually. So we start to leave and he takes us to his car.

There were only 4 students so we all crammed into his car. This teensy thing. It was like riding in a clown car, seriously xD

We got to the building and a cat starts meowing. This critter gets up on top of the building and just yowls to be paid attention to! If she is taken down, she just gets back up and does it again!!! She’s absolutely insane. just stands up there. and meows. all.day.long. She’s pretty cute though…

Anyway, turns out we’re the first students to get to use the brandy new sculpture building. It’s really just a really big room with a few dividers for office and storage. We had to clean off (read: scrape the plaster off) all the equipment we were going to use, and then we got to prepare our clay. It is VERY COLD in this building, the professor keeps the door open, opens the window to smoke, there’s no heat, only cold water….and I was standing in the water actually. By the time I left, my socks were compleeeetely soaked through! It was pretty miserably cold. But the professor liked the music on my iPod? I think that’s a good thing. He talked to me afterwards about what it’s like to be somewhere unfamiliar. He’s very nice and understanding…I like him a lot. But he kept saying I should stay longer than 4 months……. xD;

Pretty sure that’s all that happened today…..

~Han

but I had a LOT of pageviews today, thank you! 😀

This morning there were blue skies….. (view from my dorm…that beige line in under the dark blue line is Ankara buildings.)

but by the afternoon, it was split. And then it rained. .__.;

These two little boys were playing soccer with a tennis ball this morning 😛

“DEVRIM” means “Revolution.” This is on the soccer field. Sometimes, I think people probably think I’m crazy for taking pictures of the most random things.

Like this tree. It’s very strange, is it not? I keep expecting an old, wise man’s face to warp out of the bark. But people look at me very oddly when I pull out my camera to take pictures.

Vending machine. It is like a small store. I spy with my little eye…..sandwiches, water bottles, juice boxes, snacks, and…a tissue pack. (You can click on it to view a bigger picture.)

This beauty was hanging out in the lobby of the library, sleeping on the heater. Sooooo sweeeeet! I was at the library to meet with my new friend Ali. He is Pakistani (I believe), and lived in England for 7 years. He had trouble when he was here with courses not being taught in English, and having to fight for himself to be able to take courses and understand the professors. He introduced me to Thomas, who is in what I believe is the equivalent of the Student Council. I gave him the courses and professors who wouldn’t teach in English, and it’s something they’ll be discussing/working on hopefully. If TCNJ is planning on having a program with METU, teaching in English is really important. Ali and I talked a little about how he is experiencing METU, and what he does when he’s stuck in a situation where he can’t understand something (IE: signs all over campus telling you stuff, but they’re all in Turkish.) He’s been a really great help, and I’m glad to have [acidentally] met him.

This is a little park area by the shopping center. I’ll take another picture when there are leaves on trees and such. It’s just generally pretty. There is sooo much MUD here though. I had to buy new pants because my other pants are all muddy just from walking on campus. It’s ridiculously difficult to avoid.

Another Turkish test tomorrow. @>@ Wish me luck!!!
~Han

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