Monday, July 7, 2008

Mini-trail at the ranch and pets in Turkey

On Saturday, a friend and I headed to Göçmen's Ranch in Zekeriyaköy in Sariyer, the northernmost district of Istanbul, to do some horseback riding. The drive to get there took us through some lush forest and I was surprised at how little traffic there was. Though neither of us was sure how to get there, we asked a gas station worker for some directions and for once they were actually accurate!

We brought along my friend's dog, Haydut (Bandit), since he had never seen horses before. Upon his first look at these creatures multiple times his size, he just gawked but didn't bark at all. The ranch had a little cafe, where they claimed to make great breakfasts and said we had to come back earlier next time to partake. The horses were very healthy looking, shiny manes and all. We hopped on and headed down the trail with our guide, Boris. Disappointingly, the trail was pretty short and as we had come in the heat of the day, the horses were rather sluggish. After circling a small pond we doubled back toward the stables. Boris then let us do some rounds in the arena.

Hanging out with Haydut reminded me of how much I want a dog. But I'm really not comfortable with keeping a mid-size dog in our small flat, or really any sized flat for that matter. My friend seems to do fine with Haydut in a flat, but some of her neighbors are really not cool with her having a dog. I think a lot of Turks are just coming around to the idea of keeping cats and dogs as pets, but enough still find the idea distasteful.

I want my future dog to have a yard to run around in. Perhaps this is just an American idea of space and freedom that's been ingrained in me. But is it really fair to a dog to keep it boxed up in a flat for the majority of the day? So this means I will likely never own a pet while in Turkey, at least not one that lives outside of an aquarium.


Anonymous said...

My name is Brielle Martell, and I am a journalist with J Magazine (sorry I couldn't find an email to contact you with on your blog). We are looking for locals in the Istanbul area to feature in our magazine for the August/ September issue. In this feature, we are looking for people to describe fun or interesting activities to do (whether it be a location to get together, eat, etc) during Ramadan. If you could, would you please tell us something fun to do in August or September in Damascus during Istanbul? We will include your name and profession (or blog website) in the article, and will send you a copy of the magazine when it's published if you'd like. I noticed that in your "about me" you state that you've been there for 2 years, so if there's any good food or anything that you recommend, it would be very helpful!!

All the best,

Brielle Martell
Editorial Intern
Tel: (0207 613 6921)

Anonymous said...

Hi, I'm from Los Angeles and moving to Istanbul in a few weeks. Do you live on the Asian or Euro side of Turkey? I will be living in Istinye and will be teaching English. If you can offer any sound advice that would be great. email:

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