Saturday, April 30, 2011

Dinner Time

You know as an American family, dinner times can be many different things. Sometimes dinner can be grabbing your plate of food prepared by your parent and taking it to your room, enjoying while watching TV, studying, or browsing the internet. Sometimes, dinner is enjoyed at the dinner table with the family, where you talk about what happened during the day and then leave immediately after the food was inhaled. Other times you may grab the plate of food and crowd around the tube (TV), not saying a thing, but paying attention to the comedy show, reality show, or daily news.

One of the things I love about dinner time in Turkey is not just the absolutely fresh and fulfilling food that is served, but rather the conversations. Typically it is started by a simple thing that happened earlier in the day, but then is extended to a very intriguing and sometimes intense conversation. When the food is all gone, they stay at the table and talk for another half an hour. After a while it is typical, if it’s not too late, someone offers to prepare Turkish coffee. This then leaves for at least another hour of conversation and fortune reading.

If you don’t know a typical thing to do after drinking a small cup of Turkish coffee, you cover the cup, flip it over while wishing something, and then the fortune will be read by another person after the cup has cooled. The easiest way I can explain this is through Harry Potter where they are looking at their personal objects.

I love the Turkish culture for many things it offers to the family and friendships. Conversation is a very easy thing to strike up, especially over dinner or Turkish coffee. This is something I would love to carry over to America. Dinner time that lasts more than the meal, conversations that can solve the world’s problems, and fortunes to explain the future. Maybe with even an hour of sanity over dinner, we can all find relaxation and health over good nourishment.

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