Monday, August 2, 2010

Stranger Danger

I have always been a rather friendly person. I remember when I was first learning to read I read the Berenstain Bears books and there was one called, "Berenstein Bears Learn About Strangers." The Sister said hello to every stranger she met and then had to learn about good strangers and bad strangers. I remember feeling great anxiety that I was going to get into trouble too because I always talked to strangers. (Most likely when I sat in the shopping cart at Snyder's grocery store.)

Although I've learned to be more careful about who I talk to my friendliness has never really waned. I think it is partly due to the fact that I've lived in pretty sheltered environments my whole life. In my neighborhoods and schools in Maryland and Minnesota, at Denison and even in Vienna and Zürich people always greet one another. Even if you don't know them you'd smile and say "Hey," "Hello," "Hi," "Grüss Got" or "Grüezi." I feel very lucky to have lived in safe and friendly locations but sometimes, especially living in a country where you don't speak the language, it can be tricky.

I guess something about me says, "Hello strangers! Please talk to me!" If some wacky weather or slightly humorous situation is occurring whoever is by me on public transport will make a comment. This is usually no problem and I can smile, nod and either laugh or say "Ja, ja." Language barrier avoided and they think I laughed at their joke, everyone is happy!

Although I don't think I'll ever be un-friendly, I mean I've made some amazing friends because I've sat next to them and started talking but, I'm not exactly sure how well this will work in Istanbul, but I realize I'm going to have to be a lot more careful. Maybe I should re-read that Berenstain Bears book.


  1. Istanbul, You mean like Istanbul in Turkey, have you never watched a little movie called Midnight Express? Never talk to strangers!-JC

  2. The tooth kicking queen of violent rantsAugust 04, 2010

    Istanbul?! You have left me so far behind. I am beyond out of the loop now. :/ I went to a starbucks today in shoes you helped me pick out, and I was sad.

    Of course you can talk to strangers in Istanbul, just...more carefully. (it's istanbul, not an extremist training camp.) I look forward to that blog. :)