Thursday, 30 April 2009

Sneak Preview

Sooooo.. 2 1/2 weeks being an Medical Assistant and I haven't elaborated what I really do.

I'm working in the Internal Medicine department, clerking patients and doing all the necessary work. I pair up with my colleagues, every morning at 930 we do rounds with the Specialists (in Internal Medicine) and at some days, with the Head Of Department.

Internal Medicine (Turkish=Dahiliye) is the branch of medicine that deals with investigation, diagnosis and non-surgical treatment of disease(s) affecting the internal organs of the human body. Patients in our department are usually chronic cases, if not, rather severe illnesses. It's mostly a 50/50 outcome. Some get better, others deteriorate because their conditions are beyond help. Or the right drugs aren't helping.

I think in Internal Medicine, one has to be quite a Sherlock.

Every morning at 930.. visit rounds with Specialist Dr.Hüseyin Çat

Dr.Hatice presenting her 87-year-old patient

Hehehehee Dr.Ahmet caught yawning

Dr.Kenan getting arranging his file and getting his facts right

Convenient way to look at an X-ray, ehhh? :)

It's really good that our group consists of different subspecialists. If it's a heart patient, other than the Specialists, we could always refer to Dr.Ilker or Dr.Ali for their opinion. Blood results show that it's an infection, Dr.Ahmet could point out a worm or two. A word or two I mean :P

One more thing about specialisation in Turkey, let me shed some light on how it's done. After a medical student graduates, he/she will have to sit for the goverment exam called TUS. If one passes, he/she can work enter the specialisation field as desired. If one fails, he/she will have to carry a 2-3 year national service meaning be sent away to a rural area for practice. After that only eligible for specialisation.

They don't have Housemanship or whatever you wanna call it. Theirs is like Russia's version of Ordinatura. What they told me was, for example, Dr.Bashak has chosen to be an Internist which takes 5 years to complete. She would work under rotation (after every 3 months) only at departments that is connected to her field. Internal Medicine, Nephrology, Gastroenterology, ICU etc but OBGYN, Paediatrics, Surgery and such are omitted. I think it's kinda cool, and easy.

Hahahahaaha here's the juicy part. Monthly salary range from 3000TL/RM6710 (more or less) for starters and Specialists like Dr.Hüseyin Çat gets 8500TL/RM19000 (minimum). The numbers increases of course, based on seniority and higher qualifications. I can't imagine how much a Prof. Doctor who works in government AND private clinics make. Let's just say it's a shitload of income. So yeahhh. You can say it's real good money ;)

Funny thing is, the government is trying to persuade doctors to work in the villages at the other end of Turkey. Those really kampung places and they pay more than they do Istanbul. Catch is, these places are politically unstable. Tolga told me it's like a different world together and there's high risk of getting killed.

Wokay. I'm crossing that option out LOL

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Meet My Mates

I want to introduce everyone my colleagues today!

Hahahahahaa I brought my camera to work and these cartoons are hilarious. We have a lot of fun at times, when there isn't much to run around for. I like a couple of them a lot, they always keep an eye out for me and have been my mentors since Day 1. Everyone here are on rotations for a couple of months because they are doing their subspeciality.

Photo of the team before my arrival (some are still here)
Main man in the center is our HOD Prof.Dr.Yüksel Altuntaş

Zülküf the anesthesiologist who has insomnia
We are best friends now after warming up to me LOL

Kenan is a Romanian-Tatar who became Turkish at the age of 15
He has a 1 1/2 year more to being a specialist in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation aka Physiatrist

My favourite 6'2'' bear with a big heart, Ahmet! :)
He is the best! Damn funny too.. his game is in Infectious Disease and a Microbiologist

This is the owner of the blog you're reading :P
At this point, Zülküf got hold of my camera and went trigger-happy

Hmmmm.. Pinar the Pregnant Physician
I think it's her heavy belly that makes her not-so-easy to approach and pretty hissy

Hatice is an Internist, the eldest and most experienced..
Zülküf really went off focus because of his sleepy fingers! LOL

Ilker is a cardiologist in the making, very nice guy too (very reserved and smiley-smiley)

The pharmaceutical agent who brought us some heart drug samples today

I miss my Ordinatura days in Moscow..
At least the goodies we got could be used on ourselves!

The new nurse, Sevda who was assigned to our department earlier this week
(and this Kenan just had to spoil it LOL)

This is Ilknur whom I like very much, she lets me do the practical stuff on the patients

Our work station, called the Banko *repeat 3x*
Hehehehe we have centralised computing system in this hospital

Evren is really nice, an anesthesiologist who eats a lot (and shares his food)
He's quite good-looking but I guess he isn't so photogenic :P

We even wear the same shoes!
Ooooohh.. notice I'm not wearing skinnies ;)

Ahmet the Internist who could have been my best friend but after a week plus..
His rotation ended and sent to the Poliklinik.. I go observe sometimes at his station

A few more nurses and doctors didn't show up today. I'd really like to snap a couple of pics with/of them too. You know, I actually fixed my Nokia 6300 so it's inconspicuous whenever I want to snap at something. In fact I did during our rounds this morning but I can't find the cable. Till next time then! :)

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

The Promise

I think this is the first time I hesitated to blog about the one event, which is very meaningful in my life.
Posting it here would be like breaking up through an sms or leaving a note before leaving for good. Wouldn't you think so?

Don't worry. Mine's a very, very happy one :)

I didn't expect it. The both of us couldn't stop giggling the whole time.

And it happened today, Tolga proposed to me..

"Tie the knot" LOL

Love is an amazing thing! ;)

Monday, 27 April 2009

Clever Carpark

Traffic in Istanbul is also very crazy compared to both Malaysia and Russia.

Years ago, I realised that no one really cares to use the honk anymore on the busy roads in KL. I guess people know making so much noise won't get them anyway. Either that or we are too polite LOL

Moscow drivers are reckless and lawless. Enough said :)

Then come Istanbul, I see they are a whole different species when placed behind the wheels. Drivers here are not shy to press on their honks, deaf to the blaring sound from their cars. They are very expressive and aggressive. No hesitation to show raise their voice and/or their hand, their cockstare itself can break your window.

But I gotta give it to Turkish drivers, that they have excellent skills driving on rough terrains. Side parking's a 100% (lined up straight like ants). U-turns are minimal. Majority of the cars use manual gear due to expensive petrol prices but mainly low gear is better for going 45degrees uphill and Istanbul is built on hills. Some districts are very steep but where we are staying is so-so. Not too bad.

What was I going to write about.. aaahh!

The carparks here. Hehehehee I got astray. Sorry. All the carparks in malls/ supermarkets/ closed buildings are free of charge. Back then, the Mafias were collecting fees for the service but now not anymore. The roads were swept clean ;) We went to the mall just now and I was totally impressed by the brilliant LED-sticks installed on the ceilings. The indicator is visible from away for drivers to know the availability of a parking space. Now how clever is that!

Hmmmm.. maybe I'm not explaining nicely. Look at the pictures below.

It's just sooooooo freaking smart.. need to go round and round to snoop for a free space

I guess somewhere in the above-mentioned countries have the same system just that I've never visited one.. so that makes me pretty much a jakun LOL

Sunday, 26 April 2009

Orchid Drink

Not exactly a very tasty-sounding drink eh? LOL

Tolga introduced me to the drink in the beginning and I didn't like it much. But today, I had a very nice cuppa and I shall introduce it to you all :)

Sahlep is popular drink only available in winter, at cold seasons because it's best served pipping hot. This special beverage is made from the salep flour, grinded from the ground tubers of Orchis mascula (a common orchid species also known as the Early Purple Orchid). The description of the tubers look like testes/man's balls.. it is also considered as aphrodisiac for some people.

Hahahahahaa in some magical traditions, its root is called Adam and Eve Root and is used in spellwork.

Sahlep has an extremely smooth and creamy texture, very sweet and starchy. Usually, the top is sprinkled with a generous amount of cinnamon powder. I don't like mixing the spice with my Sahlep because they form many tiny clumps looking like shit in my drink. Plus it is dangerous if the clumps open up and cinnamon powder disperse inside your throat. You'd prolly choke.

We didn't do much today except took a walk to town, sat around to enjoy the sea breeze.
My face has so many fucking breakouts.. I'm suspecting my hormones are at play. Depressing :(

Hehehehe we went to a Public Cafe.. no shit, Sherlock! :P

The historical and abandoned mansion next to it

Word is, this drink exists in UK too and it's actually called Saloop (sounds so damn funny)

Brilliant money-makers who manufactured Instant Salep Drink sachets!

Sugar rush! :P

Saturday, 25 April 2009

Lale Festivali

Tolga and I have missed the 4th International Istanbul Festival which officially took place on 12-19 April.

The 3 million tulips planted by the city government everywhere are still around of course, only not in their beautiful bulbous form. Or so I thought. Hahahahahahaa our visit to Gülhane Park changed my mind. The oldest park in Istanbul is gorgeous with miscellaneous colours of tulips!

Lale means tulips in Turkish

For such a beautiful flower.. I'm surprised they don't smell at all

Red tulips cushioned by little blue pansies (pansy ooohhh.. pansies LOL)

The feathered tulips.. one of the variegated varieties of the breed

Hahahahahahahaaa a bastard stalk :P

The good ol' gardener exterminating the weeds which lurk in the midst of the pure breeds

We walked around aimlessly within the vicinity, enjoying the breeze and sunshine.

I loved the tall and lean trees towering above us. Everyone in the park were taking pictures with the lovely lale just like us both.. until we were ambushed by a gypsy lady. OMG. She practically robbed us by pestering Tolga to buy a rose (which was prolly plucked from somewhere) and tailed us for a few feet. We declined politely, tried to walk away until she left a stalk on my chest and kept saying well wishes for our relationship/future/happiness etc.

Hahahahahaahaa Tolga had to give in upon hearing the good words.

"Well, you can't say no to her when she's so persistent" - Tolga

Then I hope her blessings will follow us through and through :)

The nice, broad lane in the Gülhane Park/House of Roses Park

We spotted a stork in its nest high above in the tree!

And down below, silly dogs contributing natural fertilizers to the flowers LOL

The rose was rather a hassle to be carrying all over the place, but fortunately we spotted a bronze statue of Atatürk and I laid it there for him. It reminded me of the many statues of historical figures and monuments in Moscow where bouquets are always placed beneath them. Tolga and I smiled to each other, feeling happy that we did something we learned from Russia :)

From culture to culture.. excellent way to get rid of the rose :P

Friday, 24 April 2009

International Blogger Community

From a friend from the Blogosphere, I was recruited into the International Bloggers Community.

1. Link the person who tagged you.

2. Copy the image above, the rules and the questionnaire in this post.

3. Post this in one or all of your blogs.

4. Answer the four questions following these Rules.

5. Recruit at least seven (7) friends on your Blog Roll by sharing this with them.

Leave the URL of your Post in order for you/your Blog to be added to the Master List.

7. Have Fun!

Questions & Your Answers:
1. The person who tagged you: Borneo Falcon

2. His/her site's title and url: Borneotip

3. Date when you were tagged: 25th April 2009

4. Persons you tagged: Cinderella, Agas, Mervin, Felipoween, Remus, Desmond, and Roy

ps. I checked out the source of this tag - International Blogger Community and it's a site/HQ for Bloghoppers to exchange links, share and learn about Blogging etc.
Go ahead and check it out!

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Back To Old School

It's a national holiday today! Not just any holiday but the celebration of Children's Day.
It was first celebrated on April 23 since 1935 in Turkey. I was really delighted when Tolga told me about the history of this day.

In the beginning, it was known as the "23 April National Sovereignty and Children's Day" because Mustafa Kemal Atatürk (the highly respected and beloved founder of the Turkish Republic) dedicated April 23 to the children of the country to emphasize that they are the future of the new nation. UNICEF later recognised it as International Children's Day but many countries which mark theirs on different dates.

Hahahahahahaa and I took this opportunity to go shopping! :)

I've been observing the local fashion. I like it. I blend in easily except for the big popo (Turkish=butt). Turkish women generally have wide hips. Not very tall, in fact majority are vertically-challenged. Here's where I fit right in. Everybody wears sneakers here. Sneakers are synonymous with sports shoes, athletic shoes, trainers, running shoes, etc. Common footwear brands are NIKE, Adidas, Converse (a lot of them, in every different colour), Puma.. well, you know the list of them. Most of the girls are clad in sporty outfits so they look really good with sneakers and sweat pants.

Remember I said hardly anyone wears skinny jeans.

That's because they have prosperous bottoms to go around with. They'd be upset when they can't pull them up no more, according to my boyfriend.. I guess it's a lot more comfortable considering Istanbul has cobblestones and hills for grounds. Nowadays I even feel like changing my entire collection of denim.

So finally, after much sneakers-hunting.. I got myself a pretty pair of Converse All-Star!!!

I'm sooo happy!

I'm soooo happy!

I'm soooooo happy!

Aaaaahhhh.. the sleek and shiny black shoebox

I'm celebrating originality too! Only not with Adidas LOL

Say Hellooooooo to my Chuck's! :) :) :)

A pair of peach-white codename AS DBL TNG Plaid Ox

Hahahaahaa mine's framed red in this picture :)
(from Wikipedia on the origins of Converse All-Stars)

Brings back good memories. My first pair of Converse was skater shoes and that was like more than 10 years ago!
I remember it was velvet and dark blue in colour.. bulky too. Aaahhh.. flat foot fashion. Canvas and rubber. Back to old school. Wooooohooooo!

Seems like I got a nice present in conjuction with a..

Happy Children's Day!*

*semi-proof of me not exactly a grown up yet LOL

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Break The Film

So this is my 3rd time in Turkey and I decided to stay on right?

In my previous visits, I really had a great time and I liked Istanbul alot. I still think it's a lovely city but I also believe it's because I'm in love with Tolga making everywhere liveable. Beautiful too. Still, culture has its culture and newcomers have to adapt. Hahahahaahaa and most newcomers like to share his/her experience, just like I how I do.

I never mentioned about the fun watching movies in Turkey. I must stress again that they don't dub foreign films, they don't censor anything and they are on par with global releases of a new title. Unlike Russia. These positive entertainment policy applies for both TV and cinema.

Cinemas are slightly different compared to Malaysia, where movie theatres are monopolised by TGV and GSC.

Here, the old names are being upgraded, if not preserved its quality. It's very nostalgic having an escort walking us to our seats with a torchlight, flashing-flashing at the numbers to confirm them LOL I think Malaysia should polish back REX and Capitol. You'd be surprised many people still go to these kind of cinemas. But of course, the real money-makers are the cinema chains in shopping complexes.

Hahahahaaa I've never done this before

Say Hello to the 35mm movie projector! :)

And this is the platter system that feeds film into the projector.. nice, huh?

Anyhoooo.. I wanted to tell everyone that watching a movie in a cinema here in Turkey is truly an experience because they have entr'acte. Pronounced as ankh-trakt meaning a break between two acts (usually applied for theatrical performances) so yes. You read correctly.

In the middle of the movie.. the screen goes blank and lights come on!

Hahahahahahahaaaa some people get up, leave the cinema for either to take a leak or buy a drink! Some people stretch and yak, and I was definitely the only one who nearly died from a heart attack! It's very, very strange right?

Imagine some heavy-duty, action-packtion film going on and everything comes to a halt.

See how patrons can buy popcorn during entr'acte LOL
The screen has advertisement at the moment

Hahahaaha the popcorn seller spotted me :P

Tolga totally approves of it. He says it's necessary. He asks me what do Malaysians do if the movie is say, 3-hour long? No entr'acte for toilet breaks? He said it's ridiculous.

Come to think of it.. Malaysian movie-goers sneak out to the loo during conversations or the part they assume isn't important to the plot (know that I'm talking for myself LOL). I never went to the cinema for Titanic. I really wondered how did anyone sit through 4hours without budging.

But you're still thinking "In the middle of the movie.. the screen goes blank and lights come on!", am I right? :P

I don't think it's so bad after a while *wink*