Turkish Çay and some Conversation…

One of the most refreshing drinks that I have ever had (after the Indian ‘cutting chai’) is the Turkish çay.

Turkish Cay
A refreshing cup of Turkish çay!

Pronounced as ‘chai’, the Turkish çay is black tea consumed without milk. In most parts of Turkey, you will often find locals huddled up, catching up on a glass of çay, a smoke and a game of Okey (a Turkish board game). Men, Women, youngsters, couples – everyone sips up on their favorite glass of çay – It’s almost the national drink of Turkey!


Locals in Selcuk, Western Turkey catch up at a park over a cup of çay


Some çay, smoke and a game of Okey – on the sidewalks of Selcuk, Western Turkey

And like it is many countries, çay can help brew up many conversations!

Once at Selcuk (Western Turkey), çay helped strike a conversation between my then 3 year old daughter and a senior gentleman at this café – they caught up on a chat for almost 30 minutes! He spoke Turkish and she Hindi – neither understood each other’s language – but they had, what we thought, a very meaningful conversation. He even helped her colour sketches in her book. Like they say, a smile and some tea – can help you connect with anyone in any country!

When you travel, conversations are beyond the language and age bar!

Through our 20 odd day stay in various parts of Turkey, we had çay every single day – I think about 5 to 6 times a day..!  I close my eyes and can still get a whiff of the aroma & flavour! I think I am going to sign off now and go get me some ‘chai’.





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