Testimonial: First Aid project in Cappadocia!

Andreea participated between 19-26 august, in the youth exchange: “It's not over till it's over”, organized in Turkey, Kırşehir (Cappodocia), in which our organization was partner. This article is her testimonial regarding the project! 

And we’re off to... Turkey, to participate in a youth project about First Aid. The road was long but it wasn't boring at all. Istanbul Ataturk Airport has a huge line until you get to passport control As we passed, one face attract my attention. After the girl passed by us four times, the 5th time I asked her if she was also going with SUPER TINERI in a project in Turkey, because she looked familiar. Lucky me, her answer was yes, and so, another Romanian member joined me and Ioana. After 30 minutes the boys also came, and we were trying to find our guide, but that was almost impossible because there were a lot of people who were waiting for somebody.

At one point, I don’t know how and why, the Czech people (I think they have special powers) found us. After we found our guide, we went by tram to the Otogar in Istanbul. It is quite a view to see Istanbul in the night, with all the skyscrapers and the different colors of light it gives you the impression that you are in a dream. We traveled all night by bus. At one point we made a stop somewhere and the Bulgarians came to us full of energy, which was weird, considering it was 2 a.m.

We arrived the next day in Kirșehir and finally got some sleeeeeeeeeeeep. The next day was dedicated for us to learn our names that was so hard although we made like 5 hour games. We had so much fun and I got the chance to meet 40 people from 6 different countries: Turkey, Spain, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia and Romania as well.

In the evening it was the Turkish night and we had the opportunity to taste the Turkish cuisine. A typical meal starts with soup, followed by a dish made of vegetables or legumes boiled in a pot, often served with rice or pilaf in addition of a salad or cacık (made from diluted yogurt and minced cucumbers). Also, for every meal, the Turkish tea a.k.a.”CEAI” is essential. I prefer tea instead of the Turkish coffee, but also the coffee gives you a nice mental boost.

Also we had the chance to find out more things about Turkey, its culture and its people, and also we had to listen to their prayer I guess 5 times a day.

When we visited Cappadocia, we went to one of the shops situated in a cave, and there people could make ceramic dishes. Some of us had the chance to make their own „cucumber dishes” and it was very funny.

We took a lot of group pictures and we were all smiling because the photographer was always asking us to say “funny things” instead of the classic “cheese” (we all knew what those funny things really meant... it is an inside joke).

Then we arrived in a park which had a bridge across a river. This bridge was balancing a lot so we said that it was made by drunk people.

After that, the Turkish team was very nice and prepared for us a lunch in the park with Donner kebab. Too bad there were so many bees and I couldn't enjoy it at my best because I am absolutely terrified by bees. We went to the caves of Goreme and it was absolutely wonderful to see all the bizarre shapes called “Fairy Chimneys”. Goreme is an unique city and I think it is definitely a „must see” place.

It was time for the Spanish night and we found out things about Galicia and about Santiago de Compostela, the city where some Spanish guys live in. We forgot about the city, culture and bla bla when it came for tasting the Spanish food and, oh well, I could say that SANGRIA was „DIVINE INTERVENTION”. Then we partied all night long and we had a great time, singing and listening to a very talented Turkish guy, who knew how to play the guitar (he also has a rock band).

The Turkish people really like to clap. Clap for the bus driver, clap for the mayor, clap for the coffee for the tea for everything, so in that night we clapped a lot.

In the day dedicated to FIRST AID course we went to a hospital where a specialist presented us all the necessary things to know for being able to help a family member or someone else in danger. We also made practice and we learned how to CPR an adult person and also a child and a baby because CPR is different, depending the age of the victim. In case someone chokes, we also learned the Heimlich Maneuver.  I think it was very useful and it is very important that each one of us knows these essential things because we can never know what and when something bad will happen and you can make the difference between life and death.

We also organized the Romanian night and we were not that well prepared as the Spanish people were one night before, so we had to mobilize and make something traditional so we did and this is what it came out. Also the Bulgarians had their night in the same time because the Spanish people left earlier. I found out that we have many common customs with the Bulgarians.

Because they were the last to organize their night, the Czech people and Estonians really cooked a lot of things. I liked the Estonians presentation, it was very funny.

One day we had a picnic and we played cards and Mafia, smoked Narghile, and the Turkish organizers’ family was very nice because they made a barbecue with Kofte and I don’t know the name it was roasted chicken on a stick like Romanian "frigarui", but of course it had its own spices and the taste was different. The night was nostalgic because as I said the Spanish people had to go earlier back home so they left and we were kind of sad, because we made a strong connection with them, they were all funny and we talked a lot about food, politics, about „funny things” and we had a great time together.

After most of the people left, I realized that I had met people from all around the world, people who are different than myself, but people with whom I could connect, laugh my a** out, have fun. I will never forget them.

I think all the countries made a great group. The Bulgarians were energetic, friendly and Rosi, one of the Bulgarians, had the idea that each one of us should receive a part of a tape band at the end and when we meet again, we should connect the band tape and play its song. I think it is very symbolic and it represents us, the IFAC Group: a pure spirit, open minded, funny, energetic, full of ideas, talented, friendly.

by Andreea Vieru 


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