42 Istanbul Resolutions for 2016

1. Find some way to convince our friends & families that we’re safe here.

2. Stop going to malls so much… or at all.

3. Use taxis less, learn our local dolmuş routes and generally be better navigators.

4. Speak to our taxi drivers incessantly in Turkish to ensure they go the shortest route.

5. Speak Turkish with our Turkish friends and colleagues. Maybe dazzle them with some useful Turkish idiomsEmek olmadan yemek olmaz.

6. Beat the “Turkish plateau” and bask in glory on the other side. Subjunctive mood tenses, here we come!

7. Make more friends! Who else will watch us fail in achieving our resolutions?

(source: XKCD / CC BY-NC 2.5)

8. Become experts on beer in Turkey. There’s more to life than just Efes! Microbrews are calling out to us.

9. Read less Orhan Pamuk. The Time Regulation Institute, Eleni and Wicked Istanbul were some YG contributor favorites. The King of Taksim Square, Portrait of a Turkish Family, and Dare to Disappoint: Growing Up in Turkey are on our current reading list.

10. On that same note, perhaps, maybe, possibly, FINALLY finish a Pamuk novel. Or you know… in 2017.

11. Now that Netflix is available in Turkey, we can binge-watch Narcos, Making a Murderer and so much more. Goodbye productivity!

12. Go to more hole-in-the-wall bars and restaurants. If we haven’t heard of it, it must be good! Even less well-known spots are a great start.

13. Figure out how to take care of all our medical needs at hospitals & skip the drama. No, we don’t want those extra 20 blood tests.

14. Conquer our fear of driving in the city! Therapy? Support groups?

15. Download all the necessary apps for Istanbul, so we can impress our friends by conjuring a taxi from thin air. That’s still impressive, right?

16. Cook more Turkish food.

17. Eat more manti. We can shed the pounds next year.

18. Keep up with the latest food trends.

19. Find cooler ocakbaşıs to eat at. We’re talking live-music, cat in your lap, charming waiter cool.

20. Focus on finding authentic sahlep to ensure we only drink the best.

21. Master the art of being a guest in a Turkish home. Our in-laws are going to love us!

22. Properly learn some Turkish dances. Unfortunately, drunken sincerity has only gotten us so far.

23. Try to get used to the things that may be unusual for us. When in Rome Istanbul…

24. Be friendlier and more cheerful! Just because they got on the metro before we got off is not a reason to be bitter all day. Even though it’s like the millionth time!

25. Wake up earlier and seize the day. Freelancers know, the struggle is real.

26. Get in on some of that sweet, sweet fortune telling action.

27. Quit smoking. There are always plenty of opportunities to get it second-hand.

28. Finally get around to preparing an earthquake bug-out bag.

29. Discover more cool clothing shops.

30. Spend some time getting to know our neighborhood cats.

31. Quit being too lazy to go out on the Asian side (or vice versa). It’s never as difficult as we think.

32. Get out of the city at least once a month. Our blood pressure deserves it.

33. Turkify our homes a bit, because life without a cay demliği is a disservice to all.

34. Learn yoga postures in Turkish so we aren’t one step behind everyone in class.

35. Write more.

36. Keep up with concerts, exhibitions, etc. and actually attend some of them.

37. Go to more sporting fixtures. Delight in how passionate the fans are.

38. Start making the foods that we miss from home. Chinese food, Chinese food!

39. Spend less time looking at our phones and more time living.

40. Don’t stress so much about things beyond our control. We mustn’t let the doom and gloom of the news bring us down so much.

41. Order less Yemeksepeti… as if we haven’t said this every year and failed.

42. Maintain our sanity and keep a positive outlook. 2016 is gonna be great!

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