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My name is Gizem,
I'm an Architecture / Synthetic Biology student at MIT. I am originally from Istanbul, Turkey and I currently live in Boston, MA. I play the cello, swing dance and sail on my free time that I manage to capture away from my studies. I go to gym regularly (at least 3 or 4 times a week).
The main focus of my travels are to meet with new people, explore new places and discover new things to do! I also enjoy catching some local jazz shows, checking out swing dance clubs and exploring museum / art galleries.
There's no tomorrow, so never postpone travelling!
Why I’m on Couchsurfing
I've started CSing when I was spending my summer of 2011 in USA as an 18 years old young Turkish woman. Following my 2 months long summer work as a camp counselor in a YMCA summer camp for kids in New Hampshire, I made my way across the country by CSing almost at all destinations! Since the summer of 2011, I have CSed in many other countries (and hosted in Paris); I feel like I have a family in place wherever I go across the globe!
My great hosts btw 2011 - 2015:
-John Potter (Pittsburgh)
-Zack Riviera (Philadelphia)
-Sherri Morgan (Washington DC)
-Erin Weston (Miami)
-David (San Francisco)
-Derik DeBaun (Los Angeles)
-Patty Lund(Long Beach, CA)
-Enuma Elish (Berlin)
I do not participate to CS only as a surfer/host but I subscribe to the local meeting whenever I can! For instance, during my 2011 USA CS trip, I had really great time with especially Aaron Soriano and Praful Mathur in Miami, Jean Michel-werk in LA and so many more people whom I met through CS meetings! Especially when I was living in Paris, I was participating to so many CS events which helped me create a great social circle!
Architecture, Music, Painting, Museums, Art, scuba diving, swimming, collecting old stuff such as records, cameras, vintage clothes and accessories...I like to collect notebooks which contains my sketches and memories during my travels, languages...
- swing dancing
Music, Movies, and Books
Jazz (Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman...) and classical music (Elgar, Schumann, Kodaly, Goyescas...) are my favorite genres of music. I also love blue grass, indie, folk and country music.
I absolutely love movies! My favourite directors are Wim Wenders, Nicolas Winding Refn, Peter Wein, Michael Gondry, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, The Coen Brothers, Paul Thomas Anderson, Stanley Kubrick, David Lynch, Tarkovsky etc.
I unfortunately don't have much time for recreational reading. I mostly read academic articles / books in my study fields.
One Amazing Thing I’ve Done
Exploring Paris' Catacombes (underground graves and tunnels) with a bunch of other CSers overnight (we got in at 10pm and left around 4.30am). The greatest experience of my entire life! We walked, crawled, run for kilometers and end up with spending AMAZING time down there! We spent 6 hours at the Catacombs without even realizing... It was totally worthy to taking the risk of getting caught by police or being stuck at 20-25m under Paris!
Another night trip: broke in to the Colloseum in Rome at night with another CSer. A private rendez-vous with the gladiators was thrilling!
Spontaneous overnight camping trip in a Nevada desert with nothing to keep us warm but our summer clothing since we were geniously thinking ''Dude, it's desert! It's gotta be hot!'' Hah, well how about dark and cold desert nights? Stillii was an amazing experience!
Suddenly found myself in the middle of Hurricane Irene in Miami !
Went on a alligator safari in Everglades/Florida and ate alligator :)
We ran out of gas and got stuck in the middle of the night somewhere between LA and Las Vegas in the desert!
Backpacked alone across the most secluded villages of Sri Lanka for a week.
Teach, Learn, Share
I love talking about architecture, art, movies, biology, synthetic / molecular biology, music, linguistics, meditation, water sports (especially sailing!), the making culture, fabrication, coffe and finally contemporary computational philosophy (Emergence, Complexity Theory, Complex Adaptive Systems, Cellular Automata etc) in the context of classical existential philosophy.
I am looking forward to explore new areas of inquiry as I meet with new people!
What I Can Share with Hosts
I am a very clean, respectful, flexible and outgoing person. Last thing I want to do is to not interact with my host and use their place as an airbnb! I know very well based on my past CS experience over the last 5 years that this is not what CS is about! I would love to spend time with my host(s) either doing activities in the city or at their place cooking / chatting ! I have a strong faith in the mental, spiritual and material productivity of human interaction!
I will definitely bring a small present from whichever city I am visiting from!
The only little tiny problem I ever had with a CS host was in Los Angeles in 2011. Even though my host wasn't totally in a mentally comfortable state (family issues), she had accepted my request which was very kind of her. However I had no idea about any of her issues until I've spent one night at her place. I realized that it wasn't possible for me to keep staying with her since she was keep giving incoherent signals about every practical thing. My other CS friends in LA who are absolutely amazing people immediately offered to put me in a safer accommodation and helped me get out of her house (she had put my stuff on the curb when I had kindly let her know that it's best if I find another place to surf!) I don't think this whole situation necessarily implies anything negative about her personality but let's say it was poor timing!
Of course, I didn't let that little situation to let me down in LA and kept enjoying my time there :) That's the story behing my single "neutral" review!
Countries I’ve Visited
Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States
Countries I’ve Lived In
France, Turkey, United States