Life in Türkiye


Sunday 29 March, 2015 by Uncle Spike

Western influences continue to transform Türkiye; now whilst some are for the better, that does not account for everything of course, and sometimes I cringe at the needless westernisation that heavily line the vast pockets of the very few – corruption here is a national sport, and one at which we very much excel.

Of course, the populous remain very much Turkish at heart, such as majority blind acceptance of authoritarianism and one of the highest ratios of military/police to population, limited freedoms most westerners cannot fathom, educational challenges you’d scarcely believe, and a highly polarised society which is bordering on levels that raise interesting questions about our future security; particularly considering our regional conflicts that seem to be escalating every week and surround our borders.

But on balance, and having lived in a few countries over many years, and here for a decade, I find the moral fibre of the culture surpasses the negatives. We have unparalleled respect for family, seniority and authority that set the it quite apart from the west (although that may be a contributory factor to some of our challenges too).

If you see six young lads walking down the street, there’s no sense of surprise at all when they greet you with formal politeness, or offer to help an elderly person. When we are out, our only child (7) is readily accepted by much older kids to join in their play (it’s the same on the school bus). But in turn, he automatically greets then as abi/abla (elder brother/sister); such is the cultural difference.

Teachers are revered, as are the elderly. Homes for the elderly… what are they? Never heard of one. Here we look after our own, just as they did for us. That is almost without exception, and something I really value, and probably on the long list of reasons for my immigration. On balance, the financial and political hardships experienced are outweighed by the very Turkishness of daily life.

BUT… as much as changes creeps through, there are some things that don’t change, like roadside services away from the metropolitan areas. Happy weekend folks.





17 thoughts on “Life in Türkiye

  1. Kristin says:

    Enjoyed this post!


  2. Love you viewpoint on living in Türkiye. Thanks for sharing your adventure. Twice I have visited the country, and felt welcomed everywhere. What we see as visitors, though, is always different than a longer view.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. dayphoto says:

    This was very nice! I enjoyed your essay and want to reblog it, do you mind?



  4. backtobodrum says:

    I was at a meeting on Friday where a discussion about looking after ourselves when we age came up. All the non Turks assumed that the Turks would have no worries as they’d move in with their children. All of them replied ( about 20 people aged between 55 and 75) said that their children were not in a position to look after them and they wouldn’t expect it. Times really are a changing.


  5. I really enjoyed reading your thoughts and experiences.


    Liked by 1 person

  6. Ami says:

    I always wonder about living inTürkiye and your post gives me new knowledge about it. Wetern culture influence is inevitable, even in my country. Maintaining good attitude and local wisdom is some options to survive :).

    Liked by 1 person

  7. joannesisco says:

    I love the picture at the end. It was an amusing exclamation mark to your post. Well said Spike. We can only hope that the good qualities like respect can survive.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. vannillarock says:

    One of the great joys of following interesting bloggers- learning why they love to live where they live. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Dr_IQ says:

    Well said. I can relate. Oh, but we are the champions of ‘government corruption’.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Marso says:

    Thank you for sharing such a meaningful sense of place!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Sue says:

    And Happy weekend to you, Spike


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