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3 Ekim 2012 Çarşamba

An American Geocacher living in Turkey

I love geocaching.  It is a great way to see new things and meet new people.  For the most part, geocachers are really friendly people and have a lot of fun together.

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? A short biography for our readers?

I am from Memphis, TN, in the United States , but I live here in Istanbul with my wife  and our three children.  Two of our children were born here.  Our oldest was born in America. 

- Which countries have you seen or lived in? Why Turkey? What made you decide to live in Turkey? 

In high school, I visited Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, and Mexico on a really short trip.  I also visited Brazil, and after University, I went and lived there for two years.  After my time in Brazil, I traveled around Europe a little, visting England, Scotland, Norway, Spain, and Switzerland.  I was in the states for a while after that, and move here to Istanbul in October 2007 with my wife and one child at the time.  Since living here, I have visited Azerbaijan, Malaysia, the United Arab Emirates, and Bulgaria.
While in the United States, I met a writer for an International Travel Website who lived in Istanbul.  He became a good friend of mine, and invited me to come live here to do photography for the website.  I looked into it a little.  I already loved history, so we decided to move here and have fallen in love with the city and the country.

- What are your hobbies? 

Um, geocaching.  (-:  I spend most free time I have (when not geocaching) with my wife and kids.  We have a good time around our house.

- Geocaching?  What does geocaching mean to you? When did you begin caching?

I started geocaching in July 2010.  I became a member on July 6 and found my first cache on July 16.  My parents introduced me to the game on a visit that year and my father left his Garmin Forerunner watch here with me so I could continue to play.  In January of 2011, I returned his watch and bought a Garmin Colorado.  I love geocaching.  It is a great way to see new things and meet new people.  For the most part, geocachers are really friendly people and have a lot of fun together.

- What are the differences between Turkey and the other countries for geocaching?

I started in Turkey, thus my screenname, bulcacher (Istanbul Geocacher).  I have also cached in the United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, one in England, the United States, and Bulgaria.  Geocaching in Turkey is similar to caching in the UAE, Malaysia, and Bulgaria, in that there are about the same amount.  In the states, they are EVERYWHERE.   In one way, I like it more in the states because you will never run out of caches to find, but in another sense, caches in Turkey are cool, too, because most of the caches here take you to some neat location. 

- How many caches have you found in total? Have you placed any caches? 

I have found 935 caches total, 778 in the United States, 107 in Turkey, 34 in Bulgaria, 12 int he UAE, 3 in Malaysia, and 1 in England (story below).

I have placed 26 caches, not counting event caches.  13 are active.  2 of those are in the United States, and have people watching out for them.  11 are in Turkey, all but one in Istanbul.  Some of the ones that are archived have been replaced by another one in the same area, but not same coordinates.  Some were put in places that kept getting muggled. 

My most popular cache is GC2K2B9, Galata Bridge.  It was hidden on December 7, 2010 and to date has 1041 logged finds, along with 19 dnfs.  That’s a little over 1.5 times per day.

- What kind of caches do you like to find? Which one is your favourite in Turkey?

I like caches that bring you to really interesting places, but I also like those that are in places that you pass by every day, because it’s neat to know that those have been there, but you never knew it before. 

I think my favorite cache in Turkey is one that I found on the shore of Lake Bafa in March 2011.  My parents were in town visiting, and we flew down to Didim and stayed there for a week.  We almost skipped this cache because we kind of wanted to relax, but we read all the logs, and a lot of them talked about how nice the ambiance was there, so we went for it.  It was one of the neatest places I’ve seen in Turkey.  The cache name is Herakleia, GCX7K1.  My log is 16 March, 2011.  I put a lot of pictures with my log.

- What was the most interesting experience you've had in geocaching?

I’ve had a lot of interesting experiences while geocaching, but favorite experience is the day I found 3 caches on 3 different continents in one day.  Last year, on October 18, my family and I were going to the states.  We were leaving at 5 in the morning, traveling through London and Chicago, and landing in Memphis around midnight the same day.  These are the caches I found:

1. GC344HF  on the Asian side of Istanbul on 18 October, 2011 at 12:31 a.m. (Asia)2. GC1P9H9 in London, England on 18 October, 2011 at 1:12 p.m. (Europe)3. GC51165 virtual geocache in O'Hare International Airport in Chicago on 18 October, 2011 at 8:41 p.m. (North America)

- What do you suggest to the geocachers in Turkey?

Do geocachers in Turkey, I would suggest two things: 1. Place new caches!  I only have 3 real caches left to find in the city.  (-:  I do still have some virtual ones and earth caches around, as well as several on the Prince’s Islands, but as far as just picking one up when I’m out and about in the city, I’m about finished.  2. When you retrieve caches, make you watch out for muggles (people who don’t know the game).  Cache go missing a lot in Turkey.  Oh, maybe a third thing, too, tell your friends about it and have fun!  The most important thing about geocaching is to get out of the house, off the computer, and have a good time. 

- Thank you a lot for your answers...

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