Ryan Payne's Blog

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Last song.

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I can recall the first time I saw all of the students from the J19 program. And to be quite frank, I didn’t think I was going to get as close with any of them as I did. Not because of anyone or anything in particular, but it was because I went to a large school. And at a school like Northeastern where your pass by thousands of  students a day, you find yourself subconsciously restricting  your circle of friends to the same fab 5 that you met upon entering your freshman year.

But this experience was different. We bonded, and we bonded fast. After the first week, it was evident that making friendships was not going to be difficult. Living in the middle east was something that I’ll never forget. From the call of prayer either waking us up – i.e. Jordan, or to the call of prayer saying “GO TO BED!!”- i.e. Turkey; there were countless memories that were made and will forever be cherished.

Inside jokes were made, and made public far too often: Anthony, his souvenirs – and the glass camel, to A.I. Smith and her kitten heals. Aside from the playful times, we worked hard. Working as foreign correspondents (J19), to working as foreign photo journalists (PJ6 — wait..that’s not our official name, is it?). We reported, we interviewed, we shot, we embraced a new culture. We entered as 32 persons, and came out respectively as one. We learned what it really meant to live and die in another country.

And I think the professors, not to be forgotten, but it’s the professors who without their help, and Carlene’s 6am emails -that this trip and experience would have never bee made. Without their nurture, and with out their nagging, we would’ve just had a traditional study abroad experience – but instead we surpassed that and we became foreign correspondents.

So not to be emotional, but since I am the token gay, I felt it was necessary to make one of my last posts directed to how much I appreciate each and every one of you. I thank you all for making my experience unique and truly unforgettable.

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Written by ryanpaynesblog

June 14, 2011 at 3:05 pm

Posted in Culture, Travel

A story untold…

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Written by ryanpaynesblog

June 9, 2011 at 5:28 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Street-Corners & Cafes

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Just like every city there’s always a hidden-gem. This photograph was taken yesterday as I explored the side streets of the popular Taksim Square. During my stroll, I discovered a photo opportunity- where inner city streets meets artistic creativity.

Panorama of a side street in Taksim Square

Written by ryanpaynesblog

June 8, 2011 at 9:21 am

Posted in Culture, Travel

Melemen: Tomato Paprika Eggs

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One of my favorite morning dishes:

Photo taken from Rob's plate

 

After scarfing down my entire plate, I took a second to analyze Rob’s plate. The Tomato Paprika Eggs begins with first a layer of sliced tomatoes- make sure you cut them in slices and not halves. Once you’ve cooked these tomatoes just enough to have the juices and chunks cover the skillet, add your first layer of choice- in this case peppers and onions. (You might want to pull out a second skillet and heat the peppers and onions before adding to the tomatoes ). Once you’ve got your tomato base and it’s first layer- add about three medium sized eggs and just let them settle on top for a minute. After a minute, add Paprika and continuously stir all layers and base to make sure everything is blended in. DO NOT OVER COOK THE EGGS. After mixing for about a minute or two, add the cheese of your choice and let settle for a good 45 seconds- 1minute.

 

Written by ryanpaynesblog

June 8, 2011 at 9:12 am

Posted in Food

Just having a walk around town…

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Written by ryanpaynesblog

June 7, 2011 at 7:06 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Turkish Night Life

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These past couple of days, or should I rather say, nights, I’ve had the opportunity to explore the Turkish club scene. With that, I must express that for the Turks – or at least in Istanbul – it’s all about the atmosphere.

Yes, there are bars and little pubs – quiet and quaint like the ones you could find in your locals of Boston, but to be somebody or at least be noticed, you need to attend the right clubs and at the right times.

One club in particular that seems to be a favorite is Anjelique. During an outing for a girlfriend’s birthday, I was in shock by the amount of preparation taken into consideration to exhibit a multi-level, out door grandiose palace. Surrounded by the Bosphorus (Istanbul Strait), this restaurant by day, and disco by night is decked with white tables and couches, followed by a bedazzlement of blue and white lights stemming from one of the many bridges that connects Europe to Asia.

Drinks can be relatively expensive if you’re used to paying under 10.00 American Dollars. Here, you can find the pricing to be anywhere from (20-40USD) 30-50 Lira with a bottle service starting at 400 Turkish Lira. But again, in a country where you’re as foreign to them as they are to you, it’s best to overlook the slight differences in value- by the end of the night, it’ll be the memories and shared experiences that equate to a Lira well spent.

 

Written by ryanpaynesblog

June 4, 2011 at 3:27 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Turkiye: First Impression

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One of my professors asked me to compose several photographs on my first impressions of Istanbul. And because pictures are powerful and are worth more than a 1,000 words- I told him this would be fun, considering the culture shock. I warn you now, the photographs taken are completley biased, and only describe my first thoughts of Istanbul after leaving Amman: strange. (My thoughts and feelings have since then changed)

 

 

Written by ryanpaynesblog

June 1, 2011 at 9:52 am

Posted in Culture, Travel