Good morning. While I was sleeping, I received quite a few messages and such offering advice regarding yesterday’s post so I decided to catch the story up now instead of waiting until around dinner time when I normally have been writing. So…
Around this time yesterday (10:30AM) I was out the door and on my way to the Kaymakamligi. It was a cool, fifteen minute walk and once I was there I asked the security guard where I needed to go to get my tax ID. She didn’t understand so she stopped the next gentleman coming behind me who knew a bit more English. After a brief, three way discussion he sent me on to the Besiktas Vergi Dairesi. This time I had enough good sense to have him write down exactly what I was looking for.
Sad thing was, this was almost where I went instead of first trying the police station the day before so I knew right (or at least approximately) where it was already… From my hostel it was a fifteen minute walk in the exact opposite direction. So off I went again. On the way, I didn’t even go in my hostel, just walked by close enough to pull up the location on the map. This way, once I was close, I could just show someone the map and ask where (nerede) it was. Using this simple trick I quickly arrived at my destination.
Or so I thought. Where Google maps landed me was the marriage office. Yes, yes, let the laughter ensue. What this little mishap taught me was that the kindness and generosity of the people I have come to meet is quite nearly a universal. Imagine the misunderstanding when a complete foreigner with an incredibly limited vocabulary show up at the wrong office asking for the wrong thing. Someone from there pulled out their phone translator app and a few different individuals worked together with me and that app to understand what I wanted. Then a young gentleman walked with me about a half mile to the nearest bank trying to help. On the way he got to practise his very limited English on me. (Times Square is the bomb)
At that bank we had a conversation with receptionist and his app and a light went on for him what I had been asking all along. The receptionist shared a good chuckle with him then he wrote in my phone Mecidiyekoy vergi dairesi. We hailed a taxi just a couple blocks north, he showed that to the driver, put me in, and made sure I understood how much it should cost. (Taxi drivers… cheating tourists? Never) This time I truly did arrive at my destination… during their lunch break. I figured it was a pretty good time for me to eat as well. There was a small diner two blocks away and I had me some dilli kasarli. What it looked like in the picture, (top) and what I got (similar to bottom)weren’t quite the same thing. As the old saying goes, taste great… less filling.
Long story short, I do have my tax ID now. Yay. They did recommend that I wait a day before opening a bank account giving it time to get in the system. So guess what is top priority for my agenda today?
I spent a good chunk of my later afternoon sitting at a couple different plazas, watching the passers by. At the first, the sheer volume of people at any given moment brings up thoughts of Times Square without the glitz or Grand Central without the glory. The second one is just outside the nearest mosque whose ezan (call to prayer) I hear six times a day. Below is a gallery some pictures I took there.