Hallelujah! I have an apartment.

Wow.  Well, the last few days have been kind of exciting.

As you know, I’ve been looking for an apartment since I got here.  And it’s been an incredibly frustrating experience.  I think if I would have worked with a real estate agent immediately, I could have found an apartment quickly.  But I didn’t want to pay the hefty 12% commission. So, I tried to do it on my own.  And with the advice of friends.  And strangers.  Everyone had an opinion on where I should live, what I should pay, and who my neighbors should be.  And frankly, it all differed, and it made things more confusing for me.

Things came to a head on Monday morning, when the hotel I had been staying in for a week told me they didn’t have a room for me any longer.  I understood that my stay was open-ended, and they have confirmed reservations, so I didn’t mind moving.  What I minded was the hour notice they gave me.  Now, although my dog has been much more welcomed that I anticipated, there’s not many hotels that allow pets.  So, Clover and I were completely homeless.  Cue scene of Jessica, Clover, and suitcases, sitting on hotel steps, sobbing.

The stunning view from my place. Right across the water is the Blue Mosque and Hagia Sofia.

The good news?  My friends – really, my Istanbul family, came to my assistance once again.  I am now living in an incredible apartment that Ozen’s brother and wife (Onur and Halle) bought and refurbished.   It is on the Asian side, and yes, there is a ferry involved, but it’s closer to the European side than the previous place.  And it’s beautiful.  I can’t believe how lucky I am.  I have a panoramic view of the water, and the Blue Mosque.  My neighborhood is lovely, with nice people, cafes, and a grocery store and pet store within a block and a half.  The apartment is almost finished – and Halle has bought beautiful things to furnish it.

And, today, I’m going on a field trip to Ikea!  🙂

I feel so good.  I’m incredibly relieved.  I can make roots here now.  I’m meeting neighbors, I’ve bought things for my new place, and Oh! I have a Migros (my grocery store) discount card!  And, there is a huge pazar (outdoor bazaar) every Wednesday, that I happened on purely by mistake.  Blocks and blocks of fresh fruits and veggies, cheese, olives, spices, nuts, T-shirts, socks, sweatpants, and cheap little things for the house.  It’s incredible.

A tiny section of the weekly pazar.

Clover is in heaven.  I was walking her the other day, and a man called out to her and threw down some sort of meat for her.  He was smiling and talking to me in Turkish.  I just nodded and smiled – ha!

My apartment is large – I have lots of room for guests.  Yes, do consider that a strong hint.  Strong.

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14 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Jennifer Mathis
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 06:08:02

    I was just thinking “haven’t seen anything from Jessica in a few days, hope she’s okay.” I am so glad to see this post, and that it’s good news- except for the temporarily homeless bit. D:

    Reply

  2. Erin
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 07:17:03

    Congratulations on your new home! What an amazing view! I’d never want to leave. I’m so happy things are all coming together for you. After reading this, Kev & I were thinking this morning “hmmm… wonder how many OnePass points we’d need to fly to Turkey.” 🙂

    Reply

  3. Anneliese
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 07:44:47

    I wonder how Beatrix would do on a flight to Turkey?

    Reply

  4. elaine
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 08:48:54

    So happy you can settle down… I know how much this must put your mind at ease. Congratulations on your new home!

    Reply

  5. Kim
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 09:28:29

    Woohoo! Hooray, Jessica! Good for you! I’m totally thrilled to read all this. The apt sounds perfect! It’s coming together! Love you. Miss you. Rooting for you.

    Reply

  6. Ruthie J M
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 09:58:00

    Sounds amazing, Jessica! So glad you’re kickin’ arse abroad =)

    Reply

  7. jodycakes
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 10:00:34

    Those photos are beautiful….I want to come visit you!!!! XXX

    Reply

  8. Denise
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 10:11:09

    Glad to hear that you have an apartment. The view is just perfect.

    Reply

  9. groovehouse
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 10:54:02

    Yay for you! Congratulations on your move. Please keep up with the blog because I love to read it! Very happy for you!

    Reply

  10. Sarahnoid
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 13:15:36

    Holy View, Batman!

    I agree with Eric–please keep writing! And if you can, photos of your apartment would be stellar!

    Reply

  11. Jamie
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 13:57:20

    Do you feel that? That is jealousy vibrating from Tejas. I mean it.

    I’m so glad to hear that you found a place. As always there are bumps in the road but that just makes the destination that much sweeter!

    I’m loving your updates. Keep ’em coming!

    Reply

  12. Heidi
    Jun 03, 2011 @ 18:00:22

    The view is BEAUTIFUL! And the Pazar looks like a total “Heidi” kind of place. I, too, was just remarking to Jerry that I hadn’t seen any posts from you. I am so glad things are working out, if not how you expected, then at least in a different but equally pleasing manner!

    Reply

  13. Fayza
    Jun 04, 2011 @ 11:26:11

    Bestest news ever.

    Reply

  14. Brenda
    Jun 08, 2011 @ 10:01:25

    Jessica –

    So so happy things are coming together for you – I can see your rising enthusiasum and your strengthening confidence in your writing for this great journey you’ve taken on. What an amazing view from your apartment ! Sounds like you’re learning and exploring so much and am here in Houston cheering you on!!

    Thinking about ya and wishing you tons more amazing experiences!

    Reply

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