I live in a four-bedroom 2-bath furnished apartment in Ankara, Turkey. This picture of the street outside my house was taken in May 2006. Grass! Green trees! Illegally parked cars!
This is the apartment building. I'm on the second floor, which in Europe means that I have to walk up three flights of stairs... And no, I didn't chose the color... Note the snow: this picture was taken in February 2006, shortly after I arrived. OK, I'm slow at making websites, sue me.
I have a gate! I always wanted one, although (oddly enough) now that I have one it is kind of a pain in the buttocks. Now I want a 10' security fence with concertina wire and land mines. Some folks are never happy.
The building's entryway. Note the marble stairs (slippery when wet) and the elevator. The elevator works most of the time, which is rather unusual here.
Here is my Apartment door. The rug says "welcome" in Turkish; my (upstairs) neighbor's daughter decided that I was Turkish (before she met me) because "...no American would have one of those..." I didn't know what it meant when I bought it; I liked the geometric border. I hoped it didn't mean "Idiot's House" although I would have been happy with "Solicitors Rendered For Lard". It worked out anyway, though.
Lets go inside. Note the marble tiles and the neat mosaic!
The door itself is worthy of a second look. Beyond the static bolts in the hinge side, there are two keyed sets of bolts and a spring lock on this (steel) door. I want to take the door back with me!
If you walk straight in with a bit of a right lean (typical) you will come through the double doors into the living room. The furniture was supplied but the silk carpet was not.
If you turn around, you will see that I haven't polished my boots lately.
Hmmm...the living room suddenly has more junk in it. This picture is a bit more recent. Same green furniture, though. Please don't ask why there is a tie hanging off the door, and yes, that is one of my old range bags under it (I do have Airsoft to practice with, even if I can't get GreenGas here and just use them for dryfire)
My Cabinet of Wonders (mostly I wonder what I'm going to do with it). The plates are local, as is the meerschaum pipe (I don't smoke; of course I have a pipe), the Randall 14, Reeve Project I, and brace of Kukris are "just because." The Constantine 'knucks are just in case demons attack. You have to be ready for demons, you know.
Another of my recent purchases. This is a set of inlay "nesting" tables. I have no idea why I needed these, but they were very spiffy and quite cheap.
Continuing our tour, this is the view from my living room balcony. This place has two balconies, but the one shared by the back two small bedrooms overlooks the ramp to the underground garage. Spectacular.
The front bedroom (opens off the foyer). Although the picture shows it with junk it in, it is empty now (it makes a great place for kata ;) )
The kitchen, complete with running water, a dishwasher, full sized refrigerator, and a microwave (four things that my wife does not have in her dormitory room in Osan AFB, Korea. Not that I'm smug about it or or anything...although I think my kitchen is almost twice as big as her entire room...).
This is ekmek, or bread. It is 20 karush, or about 17 cents a loaf. Sadly, this loaf is reported to be destroyed (but was very tasty with some pizza sauce and mozzarella cheese).
The view from the foyer back to the bedrooms. The washer and dryer are in the closet there on the left. The blue thing on the wall is an "evil eye", which is a traditional good luck piece designed to avert bad juju from envious eyes. So, if you like my apartment and are wishing me ill (like my wife is probably doing right now, after the cracks back in the kitchen picture), BAM the evil eye sets it right. No worries. Useful thing, those evil eyes.
This is my spare bedroom (well, one the four bedrooms, but the only one besides the master bedroom with...a bed). I couldn't think of anything to do with it, so I made the bed. Go me.
This is the spare bedroom. Yes, that is a Jacuzzi. The evil eye seems to be heating up...interesting.
This is the middle bedroom, or the storage room. There was a bed in here; actually, there still is. I broke it down and put it behind the wardrobe. The wardrobe is full of junk like body armor, sleeping bags, assorted tac gear...I prefer the Jacuzzi, given a choice.
The master bath only has a shower. How horrible...forced to live with only ONE Jacuzzi. Hey, the evil eye is humming now...very strange.
This the master bedroom. I have a 27" TV and a XBox on the dresser there at the foot of the bed; stress, I say, stress.
While the house has no closets, it does have some rather nice wardrobes. I even hang my tee shirts on hangers now (it is very odd to have so much room...I don't keep anything in the dresser drawers! Of course, I have been married for ten years so I am quite used to having the dark corner of the closet and one drawer for all my clothes...).
Parking is a problem in Ankara. This building, like most apartments, has its own garage. I don't know about navigating the ramp in snow, but luckily my wife's Saturn got here after the snow melted.
The garage is...tight. This picture does not do it justice...my neighbors call it "Austin Powers Parking" due to the excessive amount of backing up and turning required to get in and out of the spot. I'm happy that I brought my wife's little car instead of my truck. She didn't need the car anyway, because she isn't allowed to drive in Korea. Luckily for me, I can drive in Turkey...
Lest you think me living out in the boondocks, here is Atakule, a 125m tower (with a restaurant and ball room on top) and a four story mall. Atakule is just a few blocks away, and has a Burger King, KFC, and a Pizza Hut if you enjoy such places. I'd rather have local food, although the locals all seem to eat at Burger King. Go figure.
That is all for this section!