Seeing your breath for the first time will make you feel alive. Last night in Istanbul, we ran through a rain storm to drink Efes and mojitos and returned in worse rain to go back to the hostel, that's where I first saw my breath in the air for the first time since last winter. World House has cool staff and nice clients, but apparently girls might flip over the cleanliness of the bathrooms or the smell of the beds. I recommend it for its location and price(near the Galata Tower for just $18) When we make our way back to Istanbul next time, we'll see the monuments like Hagia Sofia and the Blue Mosque and such.
The ferry ride to Bursa passed without event, except that Dounia is deathly afraid of water, or at least moving on it! The cold in Bursa was a different kind. One dry kind that slowly slips into your bones and then takes a good hour to shake off. We waited here in that cold for about an hour enduring the animalistic stares of a gaggle of Turkish boys at the bus station. I'm writing you now from my room in Ersin's house, my host who picked us up. He's an ex-AIESECer who now works for Bosch. A fluent German and Italian speaker, we get along just fine the two of us! He's also a great host and contact to have. He'll loan me his cell to use while I'm here in Turkey! This is gonna be one of the most useful tools here since even on this very first night, I've met close to thirty people at a goodbye party for another intern!
If you wanna play a fun little game, try to name all the empires that started or made their way through Turkey...(hint: the Ottoman capital was BURSA!)