Having a dad from Turkey and a mum from Scotland, there have been many occasions where cultural differences have caused an exchange of diverging views, to say the least. Here’s some…em “differences” we’ll call them, between the British and Turkish cultures:
- The dreading moment exam results come in
British- Well done you tried your best and gave it your all!
Turkish- What?! You got a C in English? You must do it again and get a better mark. (Ignoring the fact I had also got 4 A’s in maths and sciences)
2.When it comes to eating
British- Choose what ever you like on the menu.
Turkish- We won’t need a menu we will all have the fish. It’s brain food after all.
3. Choosing your career path
British- You want to go to university? That’s great honey, *boasts about son/daughter being at uni regardless of which degree it is*
Turkish- “Dad, I want to be an actor”, “Son, it’s pronounced “Doctor”“
British- “Sooooo…is there a wedding on the cards?!”
Turkish- “Roses are red, violets are blue, you have an arranged marriage waiting for you. “
British- You should probably put on a jacket, it’s -10°C out there.
Turkish- You should probably put on a jacket, it’s 35°C out there.
6. Visiting family
British- We won’t intrude, there is a lovely B&B we can stay in just along the road.
Turkish- All 200 of you can stay over, every sofa in this house folds down to a bed. (There is no such thing as just a sofa)
British- So we have our fancy set that we use for dinner parties, out silver set that is only used at Christmas, and then our everyday set…
Turkish- We have plate-bowls…
8. Family tree
British- Aunts:2, Uncles:1, Cousins:5
Turkish- Aunts:just about every middle aged woman, Uncles: 50? I lost count… Cousins: HA! (Basically yous can populate a small city)
9. Hot beverages
British- Ah a nice cuppa with milk and sugar.
Turkish- A 100ml glass of tea with no milk (because why not), but don’t worry you will usually have about 10 refills
10. Packed lunches
British- Standard sandwich, maybe a twix for afterwards.
Turkish- *other kids stare at you* “Why do you have a full aubergine?”
11. Meal time
British- Salt, pepper, vinegar and tomato sauce are the table necessities
Turkish- Yogurt is your necessity, it goes on everything, even soup and in your drinks (ayran)…
British- We should probably go to A&E and get it checked out , just to be sure
Turkish- “Here put some cologne on it” “But dad my arm is broken“, it doesn’t matter what is wrong with you, cologne will always fix it (or leave you deformed…)
In saying this, I would never change my dual citizenship for the world. Being raised in a multicultural environment really opened my eyes from a very young age. Being able to to speak and fit into the country, is a privilege that I was lucky to be born into. Even if I do hate kissing old peoples wrinkly hands and the fact that anyone outside Turkey cannot pronounce my name…