Turkey is starting to age. It has been 90 years since its “birth”. On October 29, 1923 Mustafa Kemal Atatürk officially proclaimed the Republic of Turkey and became its first president.
This is the second time I get to experience this important Turkish public holiday, although last year does not really count since it was a Sunday and I stayed at home recovering from a cold.
This year, however, I got one and a half days off from work and in the evening I unknowingly walked into a parade. There were hundreds of people on one of the main streets near my neighbourhood, waving flags and holding torches, their voices echoing in the darkness. They were praising the founder of their Republic, who is particularly popular in Izmir.
And of course during the days before and after this holiday, there have been Turkish flags everywhere. More than usually.
Happy 90th Birthday, Turkey!