How do I even begin? We are just getting back from our trip to Istanbul with Matt and his family and awesome doesn’t even describe it! Everywhere you turn in this city, there is some amazing historical site dating back 1000+ years. You learn more in 5 minutes being here than in 5 years with textbooks.

To be honest, I really didn’t know what to expect coming here. So many people asked me before I went if it was dangerous and multiple people had told me “no” so off we went. Well after being there, I can say not at all! This was the cleanest and safest major city I think I have ever been in throughout all my travels! It was so beautiful and the people were so incredibly kind and welcoming. We made some great friends we can’t wait to see again. Gladys and I even ended up stumbling in on a sing along (not known to us at first) just the other day and the people could not have been more welcoming – although we did decline the invitation to join them singing in Turkish. Maybe next time I’ll be able to say more than “Merhaba, ben Jewel!” (Translation: Hello, I’m Jewel.)

The food was incredible, the sites – divine! I could go on and on, but you will really have to see this place for yourselves just like we did. We have big plans in the works for coming back here for New Year’s of 2020/2021 and we are so excited to show this place to students!