"Thought is behavior in rehearsal."- Sigmund Freud
Here is a place that is up for interpretation. Here is where you are and its where I am, its where both of us come together to agree on something and then from there an action plan is set forth. Here is a powerful place, a place of the moment, where thoughts become real things.
So, this whole "I know, let me go down to Turkey and help refugees where I see them" thing was an idea. Then came the plane ticket. Then came the "Oh my goodness! I better raise some money so that my trip is most effective, followed by the current phase of "Umm.. I better know my route when I get there."
All these events were sparked by an idea, and thus, the idea of now is powerful one. Never underestimate it.
I did a couple of things to raise the money necessary, from selling things I own to making art to soliciting donations. At the time of writing this entry, which is Tuesday, October 23rd, 2012, I have raised $7,650. This is my standing total. All thanks to all of you and others who have been extremely supportive. I am paying for my own travel expenses out of my pocket so this total completely goes to the refugees.
And what shall I be doing with this money? Well, its not my money, first of all.. it belongs to the refugees.. the exciting part is they just don't know it yet. That is where the stories unfold, for technically, I'm merely a messenger of money to people that own this money but don't know it yet.
I have some leads as to where I will go.. I have made plenty of contacts with people in Istanbul and elsewhere that have been actively helping refugees. I have people who are willing to drive me from the airport in Istanbul all the way down to the border crossing between Syria and Turkey. My problem, curse, whatever you wish to call it is that I am familiar with how the world works and planning can sometimes work against you. I therefore hope to do this journey pilgrimage style.. stopping in from town to town, sniffing around for refugee families, and seeing how I can help.
I need to make something very clear in this first entry: If anyone in Turkey asks what Im doing there, I am there to learn Arabic Calligraphy.. (Which is what I will be doing there as well) I can't have people knowing that Im a solo girl traveling alone that has money. I have always been a traveller that seeks to learn, and this time, seeking to learn Arabic Calligraphy will be my "just a student" shield. Besides, Im paying for the trip from my own pocket and I want to make the most out of Turkey while I'm there.. Immersing myself in the culture will only help me find the people that need the most help.
So what kind of stories will you get on this blog? I don't know yet. The fun for me will be finding the people and acting like an undercover helper.
Example: Im at a coffee shop (I like it when phrases start with that), and I meet a random person who tells me they now have a Syrian family as neighbors that just moved in. I might ask to meet them and take it from there...
I go down to the refugee school for Syrian kids (which I just found the address for, thanks Khalid!) and tell them Im a teacher and can teach art lessons.. Wait? You don't have art supplies? No problem.. Then I go and buy all the necessary stuff and let the kids keep their new supplies. ART THERAPY :)
Anything.. I don't know.. Anything at all can happen. Do I know which towns Im headed to yet.. Not really. Do I know roughly? Yes... From North to South and back up.
What a plan.
Well, Beautiful people. Im off to pack for my trip, since I leave on Saturday morning. More to come soon :)