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Everything posted by lisa56shannon

  1. Hi neighbors, After three months in the US of "licking my wounds," as they say in the cowboy movies, I'm coming home to an empty house. But I won't be alone--I'll be bringing my nephew to stay with me until April. He's a smart, fit 22-year-old with a keen interest in ancient history and a more impressive knowledge of it than I had imagined. And he's so excited about this trip he can hardly contain himself. Since I'd only lived in the area for 2-1/2 months before my husband died, and was spending all that time caring for him, I haven't seen ANYTHING of historical or geological interest on the Bodrum peninsula or surrounding area. Are there any of you who live there year-round and know what's open and what's good to visit this time of year? We'll spend a few days in Istanbul, and I know what to show him there, but once we arrive in Yalikavak it's going to be pretty quiet. I don't even know what the weather will be like. I'd love to meet some of you as well one of these days. I look forward to any suggestions, including restaurants and jazz bars that might be open. Happy New Year to all of you, wherever you may be. Li-Li
  2. Welcome to our forum Coldscrip,Your camp sounds very good, and it's in a wonderful area. Since you are a male I think you'll have fewer problems even if you find yourself alone for a time. The Turkish language is only navigable to the extent that it has a lot of foreign borrowings that you might recognize from English or French (but with Turkified spellings): istasyon, otogar, tuvalet, etc. In Istanbul or Izmir, particularly the touristy areas, you will find an abundance of merchants and tour guides who speak English. And when you arrive at the airport terminal, look for an information desk called "DANISMA". That person will speak English and can direct you to public transport and other services. Once you leave the big city though, you will find fewer and fewer people who speak English, but they will probably be inversely more friendly and willing to help you all the same. Buy a phrase book. Be as careful and cautious as you would in any strange place, be humble and polite, learn as much about their customs as you can before hand and respect the culture. You should do fine. And you have forums like this one to help you. Good luck!
  3. Geezer, It all depends on the school and how desperate they are. Some private language schools will hire you with only a TEFL of some kind (usually CELTA) according to their own policy. A K-12 school is not legally allowed to hire you unless you have a BA in English and a teaching certificate for primary or secondary school, because the Ministries of Education and Labor won't approve the candidate without them. Schools DO manage to get around the regulations, though, but that means a certain degree of back-door/under-the-table arrangement or perhaps giving you a different title and hiding you during inspections. If you want to check the status of your applications, just write a friendly e-mail asking if you're still under consideration and that you hope to hear from them soon because you're starting to get interest from other schools and you'd really like to work for THIS one. Ask if you can visit the director personally. Sometimes they don't know until the summer who they'll hire. Sometimes they fire staff on the last day of school and don't know what their next-year's needs are until then. There's no 'usual' response time in this business, and they often hold off making a decision until they get more resumes to choose from, by applicants easier to get through the approval system. I hope this helps. Good luck.
  4. My husband and I are hoping for the same thing maybe this year (although I have to work most of the year in Gebze). I will be grateful to hear any recommendations on real estate agents as well. Meanwhile I'm happy to meet prospective neighbors. One thing I've gleaned so far is that you will do well to hire a lawyer before you sign any contract, and it seems to me that it's safer and more expedient to buy an already lived-in home than a new one (especially beware of off-plan real estate). Lots of people on this forum are suffering at the hands of bad business practices and projects gone bad during the financial crisis, so do be careful. Many other folks have advised me to rent first before buying. Consider that as well.
  5. Francine, I agree with all that has been written here. I've seen it all before--in Tarsus we met a person who was in the middle of a con with a woman in Europe. His pregnant wife knew all about it, so probably their families did too. He tried to pull us into his con by befriending us. He wanted me to teach him English so that he could communicate better with his 'girlfriend'. When we realized what he was up to we were so disgusted with him that we refused to have anything to do with him. Sirin's very sensitive message is also true: don't blame yourself. I have one thing to add to her comment, "he's far from the man you fell in love with, so why would you fight to hold on to what he is now?" and that is that you fell in love with an idea, not a real man. I think most of us do that in all innocence. We're pretty lucky if the idea turns out to be halfway accurate. I applaud you for your strength and courage--now go take back your life!
  6. No hostility from me--just making a helpful suggestion, one teacher to another. Good luck in your pursuit, Geezer.
  7. I can't resist commenting here. On your point, Geezer, you don't have to be a native speaker to be a good teacher of a language. I've had American and Canadian colleagues who were awful teachers and Turkish colleagues who were excellent teachers of English, French and German. I've taught Italian myself, and I'm not native. Sometimes the perspective of someone who is has learned the language later in life is helpful for understanding the process his/her students are going through. On Ben's and Agamemnon's comments, though, I have to agree that you will have more credibility if your writing on-line looks like that which you would be teaching young learners for academic purposes. It's the level of formality and professionalism that will make people impressed enough to recommend you, even if you make a grammatical error now and again.
  8. Dear Geezer, I can give you some information about this: first, the official answer is that if you are going to teach in any K-12 school, whether it be private or state, you need to have a Bachelor's degree in the subject you are teaching and a teaching credential for elementary or secondary education. The top schools (the ones with the best salary, benefits, and reliability with regard to paying what they promise) will require both. That said, some schools can bend some rules if you can get the title of "usta ogretici" (which is loosely interpreted as "teaching specialist") from the Ministry of Education. They will review your college transcripts to see if you have enough English classes to make them confident you know the subject. If you are usta ogretici you can teach but not sign report cards and such, and only some schools will risk it, but not all. The reason is that grades are all-important and if a parent thinks their child was given a low grade unfairly they will challenge it with the school, the Board, or higher. Sometimes parents bully teachers and principals even when their child hasn't done a thing to deserve any grade at all. There are other schools who will hire you with insufficient credentials, but under the table to one degree or another. You may not even get a contract, and I advise you to stay away from those schools because you might not get paid on time. Inspectors come around from time to time and then you have to hide or get lost. The hiding game even happens at good schools sometimes because there is always someone who is not an official teacher, or who still hasn't received the work permit that is pending, or whatever. I hope this helps, good luck to you.
  9. I love your husband, Sunny! My Turkmen husband does dishes too, and so does his nephew--everybody's dishes, not just his--without being asked. In fact, he wants to live with us to take care of his uncle. But he wasn't always like that. It took living far away from home (working) with several male roommates who have to divide the domestic workload. I wish all young men had to do that before marrying. It would make them better partners, I think.
  10. 20 kg is pretty standard these days from Europe to Turkey. I've been searching the websites and am finding the same thing from the western European carriers as well.
  11. Hi Planktos,Yes, cars are expensive in Turkey, but the upside is that they seem to hold their value pretty well, in case you ever do resell. And to add to my story, it turned out that in Tarsus we lived quite well without a car for a year and a half. It forced us to walk everywhere locally which was great for our health! The public transportation in Turkey is cheap and usually good (depending of course on the size of the city); in fact, when we moved to Gebze/Kocaeli and bought a car we ended up not using it a lot because driving to and within Istanbul was too scary.
  12. Hi Planktos,The same thing happened to us. We bought a used car in Florence from a friend, drove it to Ancona, onto the ferry to Cesme, and finally to Adana. We later learned that the car was a tourist with a 90-day visa and had to be taken out before the expiry date, for at least 24 hours. We did this by taking it on another ferry to Northern Cyprus (that trip, counting benzine, boat fare, insurance, one night hotel and food for two ended up costing about 600 TL). By the time the second 90 days was about up we decided to take the stupid thing back to Italy and sell it--for far less than we paid, just like Helena. You are a lot smarter than we were. You asked for advice first from people who have learned the hard way. Sometime ask me about the time I tried to have my music CD collection shipped to me from Denver to Tarsus.
  13. lisa56shannon

    Bee Eaters

    Fantastic photo, Bobcesme! One for the guide books.
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