An Oasis in The Desert

When our paths first crossed with Karakutu in 2014, the Memory Walk project was just in construction. At that time, I have never realized that I was going to involve in a project that would affect and transform me so profoundly.

The first Memory Walk of Karakutu was the first narrator experience of 22 years old Hazal. There was a group of people that I never had the chance to get together before and we were talking together about the events that had took place 20 years ago in a street of Beyoğlu. While I was narrating enthusiastically, they had no idea on how much they transformed me even only listening to my words.

Karakutu was an oasis in the desert for a young woman like me who could not find a space to say her own words and ignored in Turkey. Over the years, our paths crossed with many different people from various backgrounds. The feeling of standing together sharing our common troubles by looking at the past and the city we live in from another perspective was very precious to me.

While I was narrating a story that had never been heard by a young person whom I come across in Memory Walk for the first time, the expression on the face of a young person meant a lot to me. Creating a common language and story telling experience in a place where we were together for the first time has a significant influence in the personal history of Hazal.

I hope 2020 will be a year especially for young people where they can speak out their words louder and share the unhidden, untold stories together.

Hazal Özkalkan