The International Chronicles

19 April 2022 Comments Off on The International Chronicles


Name: Shihanna Wagha

Department: Economics

Country of Origin: Pakistan

What do you like best about Turkey?

Everybody knows Turkey’s beautiful, the food’s nice, the people are amazing. But nobody ever talks about how amazing the barbers are here. I’ve never had better barbers in my life. Even though I speak broken Turkish, they always seem to get it right.

Are there any similarities between Turkey and your home country?

The bureaucratic system.

What will you miss most about Bilkent/Turkey?

The dorm life. There was no concept of “me time,” and I had no problem with that. Happy or sad, I was always surrounded by friends, and I wouldn’t want it any other way. We did everything that could get us in trouble with the dorm management, and counted on “Çok özür dileriz” and Abla’s kindness to get us out of trouble. Dorm life has given me some of the most unforgettable memories.

What’s your favorite place on campus, and why?

I’ll say this at the cost of sounding too basic, but the pre-COVID Bilka hill was the best part of campus life. Vibrant, chaotic and full of energy. It was like a happy pill.

What’s your favorite Turkish food and/or favorite part of Turkish culture?

Nothing beats İskender kebap loaded with butter. It fills my heart with happiness and cholesterol. The best part about Turkish culture has to be the warmth. I love how kind, candid and welcoming the people are. I love how everyone’s always saying “kolay gelsin” or “Allah razı olsun” to each other.

Where do you expect to see yourself 10 years from now?

In a dining room with a big table, surrounded by the people I love, the sound of laughter and the smell of great food. And of course a truckload of money.

What’s the hardest challenge you’ve handled in Turkey?

Language. I wish I’d spent more time learning Turkish. Everything, from dealing with the Göç İdaresi, to asking for directions, to ordering food, to making friends, would have been different if I’d learned Turkish. Most importantly, I would have been able to resolve the feud we have with our downstairs neighbors. Life would have been much easier.

What places have you visited in Turkey, and which one is your favorite?

I’ve visited İstanbul, Çanakkale, Alanya, Bodrum, Cappadocia, Kayseri, İzmir, and Çeşme. Çeşme has to be my favorite place in Turkey; it’s exactly the kind of place I’d love to move to after retiring. Sitting in my beachfront villa with white hair and wrinkled skin, grilling some mutton chops and listening to music.

What’s an interesting question or comment you hear frequently at Bilkent/in Turkey?

People seem to think every Bilkent student is super wealthy.

Describe yourself in three words.

Desperate for vacation.