PERSONAL, Uncategorized

Life As It Is

Leiden in autumn

Leiden in Autumn

This September, as a 28 year old, I’ve started my new study at Leiden University. A challenging task which included me moving to a different country for the second time within a year. As someone who would assume that this alone would be stressing enough for anyone; I was restless enough to not only move, but move away from the country that my husband would continue to live. Hello long distance marriage and all the baggage that comes with it!

The commuting and the planning and the overall unknowingness of the whole situation is definitely not something for the faint hearted. Going back to living by myself again after living together for quite sometime might mean that I have to do a lot less tidying up (yay!) but it also means that most of the time I’ll be laying in a bed that is half empty (meh). All those little lost moments together is the harsh side of this new adventure we jumped in so eagerly.

Is it all that bad? Well, it might depend on which day someone asks me that question but frankly; no.

Being on the much older side of my classmates means that making friends is not something that comes as naturally as it once was. Plus, the fact that I’ll be 31(thirty-one) by the time I graduate and going back to the working life around that age is a thought I would rather avoid. Beyond all the negativity my mind tends to pour on me, my life is what it is: I am doing something I’ve been dreaming of for the last three years.

Living in the Netherlands, was an idea that we have always assumed to be well into the future. Doing a study here (let alone living) which will enable me to learn the language, culture, history, literature, art and linguistics was even beyond that. So why bring myself down over everything that comes after that point?

The answer brings me to my current situation: an inner struggle of going in between being grateful and wanting more. Being grateful for being here and having this opportunity to experience versus wanting to live here with my husband and get to try this new life out together. Okay, and maybe taking some years off of my age might also be helpful at this point but let’s not get into that just now.

Will I ever find a way to settle down to one of those feelings? Probably. Maybe. Hopefully. I’m trying to pick one that will make me the happiest even if it means to have to wait some more. After all, time is all I have.

-Ceren

If you would like to see more of my photography, come and find me on Instagram  @crn.spymn !

 

 

 

 

 

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PERSONAL, Uncategorized

Mostly Here and Sometimes There

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Oh it turns out I have a blog!

Sometime last month, for the second time this year, I have moved to a new country. Like other milestones in someone’s life, these last couple of months were sometimes bitter but also oh-so-sweet.

For someone who always prefers to be on the safer side of things, I sure do know how to get out of my comfort zone. Moving twice in a year, starting a new study in a new country, learning a new language, understanding a new culture and finding a new balance in life while coping with everything that comes with a semi-long distance marriage. Who said life gets dull as you get older?

As I approach another milestone known as the big 30’s; sitting in a classroom, handing over my homework while planning my grocery days and wondering if it was today or tomorrow that the supermarket had 50% off on all the cleaning products, I agreed that our 30’s really are the new 20’s. Only where there is less soul searching and more getting drunk on better quality drinks.

After some time away from here, as everything slowly settle down; I will be thinking, writing and sharing a little bit more. I know it’s too early to jump to any conclusions about what my new adventure in the Netherlands will bring but I am not in a rush. Right now, I am far busier with finding ways to keep my plants alive and settling arguments with my husband about how frequently the vacuuming should be done (even though it is through FaceTime).

-Ceren

 

 

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Travels

Doors of San Francisco, Part Three.

One of the Many Pretty Houses in San Francisco

We were out and about once again on a crisp, clear, bright San Francisco morning. At this point of our time in this city, we were fully aware of where to get a good cup of coffee and the best bagels as soon as we leave our hotel, also known as the only two things to give me the will to get up and get going. So far, the biggest challenge of our road trip was to find a decent breakfast because one can only drink certain amount of bad coffee without questioning if this is the time to cut the trip short and fly back to Europe for a good ol’ cup of Joe.

That morning, our bellies full, all was well and it was only about to get better from there.

Recently, I have decided to pen a series of articles dedicated to -in my humble opinion- the most fascinating details of San Francisco: the doorways. All of them unique and witnessed different parts of our short stay. So, don’t forget to get something tasty do drink, sit back, relax and enjoy the third part of our adventure.

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Door Number 641

Today’s quest was a big one. The plan was to walk to the Golden Gate Bridge, and then walk some more to see the end of the marathon around Golden Gate Park. This was mostly because we are one of those people who performs better on the sidelines than the actual marathon. Plus, the rumour has it that the after-run parties are a big thing here and why miss a good party just because we don’t actually run, right?

So we were enjoying our long walk with the wind behind us and excited to see the iconic Golden Gate Bridge. Which brings us to Door Number 641. Right along the coast on a busy street, this door equals to that little coffee truck we saw shortly after I took this photo, parked on the coast. Don’t be fooled by the size or the mobility, this place had everything from matcha latte to Turkish coffee and a high possibility to make me its steady customer for the rest of my life. If only I could live here. Who knows, maybe dreams do come true.

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Door Number 1315

The walk to the Golden Gate bridge is a pleasant one if you choose the coastal road. It’s often busy with people either taking a walk, out for a run or preparing for a day of picnic with friends and family.

As we continued our pleasant morning walk, the clouds were gathering slowly and what started as a bright and sunny day was now misty and somehow littered with thick clouds. We, being responsible travelers, were prepared for any surprise changes in the weather and quickly whipped out our thin cardigans. Problem solved, or so we thought. The closer we were getting, the more sure we were of the fact that there was no sign of a bridge where it should be. We were experiencing the famous San Francisco fog, on the one day that we chose to visit the Golden Gate Bridge. Oh, so swell!

After waiting some for what would be a miracle, we have decided to give up on our hopes and make it to the end of the marathon and that’s when I came across the Door Number 1315. Couldn’t get to see the Golden Gate Bridge but at least I got to see this lovely doorway with a beautiful teal tiles. Trying very hard to see the positive side of things, I take a photo.

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Nameless Door of the Conservatory of Flowers

I have never been to a marathon before. Never even seen one up close let alone running in it. So as we were getting closer to the Golden Gate Park, I’ve had no idea about what to expect. That’s why I was fascinated to see a huge crowd of people, all in costumes, participating and, wait, having fun?

In my mind marathons are more associated with heavy sessions of trainings, grueling physical challenges and a high level of accomplishment mixed with severe exhaustion afterwards (I mean, bleeding nipples anyone?). Unlike my expectations; this particular group was either walking, maybe jogging, some were drinking, many were talking, laughing, snacking, smoking, basically just enjoying themselves and having fun while wearing costumes. Maybe wearing a costume is not your thing? No problem, you can come naked too! San Francisco being San Francisco, you won’t be judged or booed, just like everyone else, you are welcome! What a place to be!

We managed to keep our clothes on, but certainly had fun watching a sea of people and their unique looks.

Walking aimlessly and admiring the beauty of the park when we were not busy with the marathon fun, we came up to the Conservatory of Flowers. Beautiful place with a beautiful exterior. I’ve snapped a photo to mark our day of ups and downs.

After spending all day in the city, we’ve decided to keep the evening fairly simple. Some drinks and a nice dinner somewhere closeby. If only we didn’t fall asleep roughly around 7 p.m and woke up the next morning; to a new day full of new plans.

-Ceren

Out trip didn’t end there and neither did the artistic doorways of San Francisco. If you liked what you’ve read so far, why not tune in for Doors of San Francisco, Part Four?

Missed the beginning? then don’t forget to read Part One and two!

You can find more photos of San Francisco on my Instagram account! Find me @crn.spymn

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Travels

Doors of San Francisco, Part Two.

The Painted Ladies

Architecture photography has a very special place in my heart. The streets, the buildings, trees, facades, windows… they are all little puzzle pieces that give the city its ‘vibe’. I like historical cities where the buildings go as early as couple of hundred years back and you can still read ‘Tailor’ or ‘Butcher’ shop signs made by marbles on a little café. That’s why I will never get bored of traveling through Europe. So much historical beauty in such a small space.

Spending three weeks in the United States, has changed my view on this topic and I’ve added some new cities to my long list of ‘Places I Would Go Over And Over Again’. San Francisco on that list, without a doubt, takes the first place.

Recently, I have decided to write a small piece in order to honour the most beautiful details of this city: the doorways. So just sit back and take a sip of your coffee while you enjoy reading our days in the city of San Francisco with the little help from the colourful doors.

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Door Number 775

It was roughly 8 a.m but we were already showered, dressed up, gotten our caffeine fix and ready right outside of our hotel. A busy day walking to the Fisherman’s Wharf, a strolling through the Pier 39 and visiting the iconic Painted Ladies. Busy day indeed but nothing short of entertaining.

Whenever we are exploring a new city, we always end up walking for the majority of the day. Not that we have anything against public transportation -they do suck sometimes- but walking makes us feel more included in the daily life and we always end up catching the little details this city has to offer.

That’s when we came across Warrington 775, a gorgeous doorway right at the hearth of the city, surrounded by big towering hotels. To describe the contrast, despite the clean esthetics of this photo; we were tired -again, walking for hours everyday is never easy-, defeated by the sun, hungry and my pretty shoes were betraying my feet by causing blistering. On top of that, we were wondering if the tram we are about to take is the correct one or not. Not the condition I would wish anyone to see us in but all those can’t stop me from snapping a pretty doorway when I see one.

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Door Numbers 534, 532, 530

San Francisco can impress you at every corner. Looking away or checking your map for a moment and you might overlook some of the finest details that make this city so unique.

The coffee is tasty, people are relaxed, streets are busy and the hills are steep.

On our way to the Painted Ladies we’ve stopped for a moment to check where we were and apparently we took a wrong turn somewhere. Which brings us to door numbers 534, 532 and 530. Small details we wouldn’t be able to come across if we didn’t get lost first.

These doors belonged to a building that looks like a worn out version of all the other gorgeous buildings surrounding it. Looking very calm, almost unoccupied. What made them special was the sign right next to door 534; saying ‘We don’t care about who you are or which country you come from, if you are in need of a shelter, ring the bell. We don’t believe in walls.’

Small sign with a big meaning. These doors may not be the prettiest of all, but they are the most important. Without even thinking about it, I took this photo.

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Door Number 210

Door number 210 was not the easiest one to spot. This little house we’ve spotted on our way to Pier 39 was nicely tucked away on a crowded street, hiding in a coat of greenery.

It was surrounded by a small garden which looked like it belongs to another place rather than San Francisco. The trees grew taller and the calming sound of the small fountain was there only if you stopped and listened to it.

If you are one of those who enjoys spending time at home more than being outside, this house would be your oasis. Just grab your book, your warm cup of coffee and hang out in that garden until someone has to come and check if you were alright. That’s my kind of a weekend, indeed!

Leaving my dreams behind, I chose to listen to my rumbling stomach. After I’ve snapped a quick photo, we’ve continued our way to grab a bite. What matters more at that point was whether I felt more like tacos or a burrito.

-Ceren

Our trip didn’t end there and neither did the artistic doorways of San Francisco. If you liked what you’ve read so far, why not tune in for Doors of San Francisco, Part Three?

Missed the beginning? then don’t forget to read Part One!

You can find more photos of San Francisco on my Instagram account! Find me @crn.spymn

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PERSONAL, Uncategorized

She Came in Through the Bathroom Window

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I certainly did not come in through the bathroom window but here I am, at a very peculiar time in my life where so many things have changed, so many new beginnings have become the ‘usual’ yet somehow, many more is still yet to come.. And in the midst of everything, I have decided to start my own blog.

Thinking about only last year when I was living in İstanbul with my fiancé and two cats Misa and Taco, wondering where we would be in 2017. We got married in October, went to Iceland for our honeymoon only to be followed by five long months of being apart because of my husband’s new job in Doha, Qatar. Through my eyes, 2017 started off very flashy! In March after a very stressful period of time, I have somehow managed to roll myself over to Doha to join my husband in a new country.

So far so good! Now here we were, -two humans, two cats- in an empty house with just our bed as a furniture contemplating how to get through this without losing a marble or two. Thankfully time tends to pass and we were united with our furniture once again. After that, things began to escalade very quickly. 2017, you certainly are full of surprises.

Having a Dutch husband, we visit the Netherlands quite frequently and over the years I have fallen in love with it. (if you have ever been to the Netherlands, you know what I’m talking about). The biking, the architecture, the art, the small cafes, the tradition, the history, the quirks and yes, even the language. So after some serious consideration, we have decided for me to go to a university there to take the first step into our future in the Netherlands. Suddenly, Leiden University here I come!

Which bring us to now, before I move away once again to a different country for this new chapter in our lives I am starting ‘She Came in Through the Bathroom Window’. What is it exactly? A little bit of travelling, a little bit of my life as someone who has decided to quit her job to move to another country, then move away for the second time to become a student as a 28-year-old, a little bit of our house in Delft, a little bit of our house in Doha, a little bit of our cats Misa and Taco, and a little bit of what inspires and interests me.

I guess only time will show how this place will turn out; but for now, just don’t forget to visit every once in a while.

-Ceren

♠       ♣       ♥       ♦

 

 

 

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