We have common values like Ataturk.
Mustafa Kemal Atatürk (1881- 1938) was the founder and the first President of the Republic of Turkey. Mustafa Kemal was born in 1881 in Salonika (Selanik). For his primary education, he went to the school of Şemsi Efendi in Salonika. He entered the Military Middle School in Salonika. In 1895, after finishing the Military Middle School, Mustafa Kemal entered the Military High School (Askeri İdadisi) in Manastir (Bitola). After successfuly completing his studies at the Manastir Military School, Mustafa Kemal went to İstanbul.
Aјде was the first word that drew our attention. We also use a word which is very similar to it. ‘Haydi,’ means Let’s. We were very glad to hear some Turkish words in Macedonian language.
After hearing that word, we did a search and found many Turkish based words such as, будала from budala, дарчин from tarçın, дуќан from dükkân, кадифе from kadife, кајгана from kaygana, пенџер from pencere, пура from puro, соба from soba, турпија from törpü, чај from çay, ќилим from kilim, ќумур from kömür, џамија from cami.
We were really amazed when we found out that there were many Turkish words in Macedonian language.
People here in Macedonia are incredibly friendly and helpful. Even they cannot speak English, they try to help you by using their gestures. We would like to tell our story on the way from Skopje to Bitola. We were on the bus and did not know where to get off. We asked an old guy if the place where the bus stopped was Bıtola or not. Firstly, we tried to speak in English, but he did not understand us, and then we used our gestures pointing the place and asked ‘Bitola, Bitola?’ And the old guy said ‘ne.’ Whenever the bus stopped, we always asked the same old uncle if the place was Bitola or not. At last, when the bus entered the Terminal, the old guy started saying ‘Bitola, Bitola’ pointing at the Terminal. That moment was very precious for us. It was an incredibly beautiful moment. We were away from home and knowing that the place where you were going has beautiful people. Whenever people heard what country we were from, they started saying some Turkish words.
We are trying to learn some Macedonian words, and whenever we see someone on the road we try to say some words in Macedonian. We are living on the same road with this beautiful lady, in the photo. While going home, we just wanted to say hello in Macedonski “zdravo” and she replied us with a very friendly manner. Then we started talking with this lady. She is Australian living in Macedonia. She told us how beautiful this country was, how beautiful of its people. Sometimes she spoke in Macedonian, sometimes in English. She thought we could understand Macedonian perfectly because we used ‘“Kako si?’, ‘Dali razbirate makedonski?’, ‘Ti blagodaram’, ‘Jas sum Turski’, ‘Jas zboruvam malku Makedonski’, ‘Se obiduvam da naucham Makedonski’, ‘Makedonya e prekrasna zemya’,‘Imaj prijaten den.’”
(Shirok Sokak in Bitola)
(İstiklal Street in İstanbul)
When we came to Bitola, we visited the most famous Sokak “Shirok Sokak.” It is quite similar to “İstiklal Street” in Istanbul, “7. Street” in Ankara, “Kıbrıs Şehitleri Street,” in Izmir.
Let’s talk Istanbul; when we say Istanbul, “Istiklal Street” comes to our minds. Similary, when we say Bitola, it is “Shirok Sokak” comes to minds. In Shirok Sokak, there are many cafes, restaurants, bars, markets, boutiques, clothes stores. Similary, in “Istiklal Street”, it is found many shops, cafes, restaurants, boutiques, clothes stores, bars, etc. In both streets, we can see Street Musicians.
Istiklal Street is the heart of Istanbul, simirlary Shirok Sokak is the heart of Bitola.
People can do whatever they want in both Streets. If they want, they can sit in a Cafe and drink their coffees or teas or whatever they wish, or people can do shopping, or listen to Street Musicians. Both Streets are like a summary of the city in which they are. You can find different kinds of people in the same place. When you experience İstiklal Street, it going to be like you experience whole city. When you experience Shirok Sokak, it is going to be like you experience whole city.
(Old Bazaar in Bitola)
When we compare The Old Bazaar to other bazaars in Turkey there is a big difference. Bazaars in Tukey are set up in different days and in different places, here in The Old Bazaar, is always set up daily.
In both Bazaars, we can find fresh vegetables, fruits, tools etc. Even when we speak in different languages, we can communicate with each other easily.
In addition, people in Bazaar are very friendly, and helpful. In the Old Bazaar we met many people. One of them was a Turkish guy who took place in a very famous Turkish Series ‘’Elveda Rumeli,’’ he helped us to find the place where the tv serie took place. We got his picture, and found his scene in the series.
People who are going out from their confort zones worry about their food abroad. We were ones of them. We also thought what to eat. When we came here, we saw many food belonging to Turkish cuisine such as, baklava, tulumba, kadayif, lokum, and Turkish beverages like tea, coffee, ayran at markets.
Even the restaurants have delicious Turkish food like; kebab, doner, pide, kofte, borek etc.
Although we are very glad to find Turkish food here, we really like Macedonian food as well. Cheese has an essential place in Turkish breakfasts. There are many different kind of cheese. We have experienced delicious food with cheese here, and our one of favourites is baked cheese.
Aynur Cosar & Bursra Yildirgan (EVS, Turkey)