The three-story Yenikoy elementary school rises from a plateau like a mesa in south-central Turkey. It is the only building for miles, its exterior walls a pale yellow reminiscent of sweet corn. But the playground swings and slides beside it are a full-on rainbow of crayons: The bright blue of a cerulean sky. The crisp red of a fire engine. The orange of a traffic cone.
Surrounding the playground, however, is a black wrought-iron safety fence. Why? Because the school and playground sit at the edge of a ravine that is easily a hundred feet deep. At the bottom of the ravine is the Dudan Crevasse, a vertigo-inducing gash that plummets at least another 350 feet.
I have visited the area twice in the past two years. In May 2013, the first time I went, the school did not exist. By this August, it had sprouted from the earth like a dandelion.
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