Name: Ali Asgher Makati
Country of Origin: Pakistan
What do you like best about Turkey?
The best thing about Turkey, I guess, is that it’s really beautiful, and also the lifestyle is excellent. I still have to see much of the country, but I will have done so, hopefully, by the time my studies end.
Are there any similarities between your country’s culture and Turkey’s?
Well, the family and social values in my country are very much the same as the traditional Turkish values. Holidays and festivals are similar too.
What will you miss most about Turkey/Bilkent?
I think what I will miss the most is how the general lifestyle on campus and in Ankara is stress-free and healthy. Coming from a city (Karachi) that is similar to İstanbul, it feels good to live in a calmer, less noisy and fresh environment.
What is your favorite place on campus, and why?
There are many such places, to be honest, but my top favorite is probably the football fields—because I am always happy there.
Turkey (Bilkent) provided me with a good opportunity and with shared cultural values, so the decision was easy to make.
What’s your favorite Turkish food / favorite part of Turkish culture?
Favorite food is a tough one, köfte probably, but iskender too.
My favorite part of the culture is the hospitality and kind nature of the local people and the students, especially those from smaller cities.
Where do expect to see yourself in 10 years?
Working somewhere challenging—probably somewhere where I still have a chance to grow. A good international firm, maybe.
What is the hardest challenge you’ve overcome in Turkey?
Learning the language, along with the language barrier, is probably the toughest thing here. I am gradually improving with time, and by taking classes, but sometimes it is really hard. But I guess it can only get better. Also the residence permit process, i.e., making trips to the police station where no one understands internationals, is exhausting.
What cities have you visited in Turkey? Which one do you like the best?
Istanbul, Amasra and Safranbolu. But there are many more to come. And so far, I liked them all.
Do you have any hidden talents?
I like to observe situations and people carefully, and then try and read what’s on their minds! And I guess I can do it fairly well.
What is a question you are asked frequently or the most interesting comment you’ve heard at Bilkent/in Turkey?
What is your favorite team? And when I tell them it’s an international club, they follow with, Oh, but which club do you support here?