Monday, 5 May 2008

Istanbul, Night 1 and Day 2, 21-22 April 2008

I arrived in Istanbul some time after five p.m. on the 21st but didn't properly arrive at my hotel until nearly eight as there was confusion over the airport transfer; so all I did that first night was have dinner near my hotel, at Doy-Doy. As it was quite warm, you can imagine how disappointed I was that they didn't serve alcohol on account of their proximity to a mosque, in this case The Blue Mosque. Here is my view of The Blue Mosque from Doy-Doy's terrace.

That thumb in the right corner of the picture isn't mine, but that of a friendly foreigner who wanted to help me obtain the best shot after I'd agreed to take a photo of him and his girlfriend--he seemed keen to return the favour.

The next morning I went to Kadir Has University to meet the faculty and teach a class introducing the prose poem. By the time I'd taught, we'd been to lunch, and I'd settled the arrangements for my next teaching session on Thursday, it was mid-afternoon, so I decided to visit nearby sites, beginning with The Greek Patriarchate. At the Patriarchate is a beautiful small church, the Church of St. George. Here are two interior pictures.

(To see more detail, click on any photo to enlarge it.)

Next I walked to the area of Eyup and its summit at the Pierre Loti Cafe and had a cup of tea as I looked out over Istanbul--there's a grand view from there (but with the humidity there was a heavy mist, so the photos I took there didn't turn out well), then back down into Eyup to do a little shopping.

Early evening I rejoined the faculty at Kadir Has, from which we took taxis to Taksim and drank beers at the outdoor tables of a bar I believe was called Urban. After a while those with children headed home, and those remaining, Mel and Selhan, took me to Lades Restaurant for authentic Turkish food. Such a day!

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