In response to this comment asking how we were able to take pictures (there are more stay tuned) I though it best to describe the inspection process on the first day.
On the first day when you enter the base ground everyone walks through a metal detector that incessantly beeps. It looks weird if you don’t beep as you walk through but everybody does and none of the solders take notice. After the initiation process all of the bags are checked once again.
People bring all sorts of luggage from full suitcases to small gym bags lacking soap and shampoo as I had. (I probably should post about the night before I got to Burdur to explain). Everything is given a decent look-over and mostly books and pills draw attention. Pills including vitamins, medicine, and Pepto-Bismal are allowed in, only to be confiscated the next day.
You are allowed to bring “necessary” pills on the first day and then they ask everyone if they have any pills on the second. We’ve already been allowed right so no problem everyone responds honestly and then the pills/vitamins are confiscated and destroyed. (Personally I believe the “good ones” are sold or taken by solders in the infirmary). A lesson for anyone who has to do army time in Burdur, Turkey – KEEP YOU MOUTH SHUT ABOUT YOUR VITAMIN C. No one will find out if you shut-up and discretely keep it in your locker.
Books are checked to make sure they don’t contain any political or controversial content and cell phones are registered and taken away for keeping. This is only during the first week however then everyone becomes privy to this and so have the shopkeepers just outside the base.
Being Turkish they’ve found a way to make a buck off of an opportunity – they offer to keep the cell phones during the week and you can pick them up on the weekends when you are let out for a few hours. This way when you return you can sneak it back in (not registered remember) and then take pictures. The shop keepers also take cameras too and this is how the pictures were taken.
The store owners all seemed pretty trust worth and countless people got their expensive electronics back without any being “lost”.
More pictures to come… 😉