I’ve again ran into some trouble in Turkey. The other night, I was trying to open the door to my apartment building, and a guy started running down the hill towards me. At this point, I was only mildly on edge. But then he came right up to me, and started saying some stuff really quickly. I was trying to tell him that I didn’t want anything, and that he should go away. I was feeling uncomfortable, and didn’t know what to do, since I couldn’t go inside my building and let him follow me. Nor could I really leave– he could just stay there and wait. After him standing there, getting closer, backing me into the corner, he finally lunged in and started trying to grab all over me. I smacked his hands away, shoved him as hard as I could into the street and yelled loudly, “don’t TOUCH me!” He got scared, then, and ran off.
Since that day, I’m afraid to even come home at night after work. I’ve realized that he’s part of a group of hooligans who stand on my street corner breaking bottles at night. I see him almost every day now, and have to wonder when he’s going to try and take his revenge at me for getting away from him and embarrassing him. Will he bring friends next time?
These situations may sometimes come with the sort of fearless lifestyle that I’m trying to live. But after being attacked 3 times in 3 months, I’m saddened that my view of the city has been tarnished by a few evil people. I’ll try to enjoy the rest of my time here, since the best parts of Istanbul are really something, but I’ll also be glad to make it to a safer, more comfortable place next month.