Here Comes the End of the Holiday

Here Comes the End of the Holiday

After a long holiday, I’m still trying to fix my sleeping schedule and also I’m trying to set my mind to be more focused this semester. This semester is my thesis semester, so it is really important for me to be on schedule to make the right decisions. What did I do during our 5 week holiday? Read more to find out!

A couple of days before I left Chicago I decided to have a gathering. We planned to have a Turkish raki night. You might ask, what is raki? Raki is a traditional alcoholic Turkish drink which is made from anise. (Greetings to my Greek friends out there who like Ouzo; raki is from the same family.) One of the great things about the Turkish festival that we organized a couple of months ago was that I made a lot of friends there. I understood the importance of joining different activities when I joined the Turkish festival. I think everyone feels the need to be someone else. You are the daughter or the son when you are with your family, you are a filmmaker and a student when you are at school, and you are someone else in different environments. I think this is really important especially for a foreigner. The first time you go to a different country you are still in the magic of it, but after a while, you start to feel alone when everyone visits their family, when their friends come to visit them, or if they leave to visit their friends. So, any activity other than filmmaking is very helpful. It’s not just helpful for socializing; I think it is important for a filmmaker to be in different environments to observe, to learn, and to find stories.

Going back to our dinner, I invited my Turkish friends and some other friends from school. Everyone gave us a hand and we all cooked together! It was a great way to say “bye” to everyone who was going to leave for the holiday.

A photo of our table at my house.

After a week I left Chicago for the second time to visit Nick in New York! It was a great holiday for about 11 days. I got to stay with him in NYC and also in Connecticut with his family. I was able to celebrate New Year’s in New York City, which was an amazing experience. That city has a different feeling that Chicago. Although I would say there are a lot of similarities between the two cities, there are some things that are significantly different. I think NYC is more international; it has all different types of people around the world. That’s not to say that Chicago doesn’t, but NYC has a lot more. It is also about the population as well; maybe it’s not fair to compare Chicago, which has 2.8 million vs. NYC which has 8.6 million. I can see myself living in NYC if I can get a job there! Here are some photos from my point of view in NYC.

Statue of Liberty from a ferry.


New York City at Christmas.

Being a tourist was not the only thing that I did in New York City! A friend of Nick had been planning to shoot her short film. So, I was able to be a part of this project. We shot it only for a day but even a small project like this taught me a couple things. I was working with Nick on the camera and lighting. I was able to experience what changes with different placements and powers of the lights. It was great to be a part of it and I am waiting to see the last cut!

A photo from the end of the shoot.

Final note: the shoot day for our thesis film is getting close. You can get the updates on We are working on the latest script drafts and, as I mentioned before, going on location scouts. This coming month is really important for our film since we are planning to shoot in March—30 days from now is when the film is going to get shaped. Stay tuned and check out our website!