Sunday, October 9, 2011

A week later in Istanbul... so much (too much!) to show and tell

Aya Sophia (Saint Sophia)
Stained glass and column inside Blue Mosque
Walkway around courtyard of Blue Mosque
Ok, this is how it is: We've been in a swim of family coming and going, amazing meals, many Metro rides/ bus rides/ dolmus rides, taxi rides, long fast walks all taking us to and from incredible places, and we fall into bed late and rise to dive into the swim again.  There hasn't seemed to be a minute to go through the hundreds of photos we've taken, much less to compose a paragraph or two with properly placed images to illustrate any small part of what we've seen or done or eaten or whom we've laughed with or hugged or kissed (at least once on each cheek, sometimes back again to the first, accompanied by hugs and sweet greetings or goodbyes).
Inside Center Dome of Blue Mosque
I feel like I need to apologize for the time lapse since our first post from Istanbul. Plus, I feel a tiny bit hopeless about ever being able to show even a fraction of what all has been thrilling me about this place and the people I'm meeting. I hope you'll accept just a few photos for now and perhaps more can trickle out later.
San Antonio Church - a special place for Ugur as a child.  Who knew she would move to San Antonio, TX as an adult?
View from a window atop Galata Tower
Galata Tower
Looking out from Galata Tower... Marmara Sea and Topkapi Palace in the background.
Ugur trying to let me photograph past her... :) A very narrow balcony with people squeezing past makes for wobbly knees!
Topkapi Palace as viewed from Galata Tower
Family dinner at sister Nilgun's house. Every dish was indescribably scrumptious.
Ugur and Bedriye at the Metro
Cleanest subway in the world, I betcha.
The Metro stations are beautiful.  Murals, gorgeous mosaics and sparkling clean.  Polite, quiet passengers.   My mind boggles. 
My overall impression of Istanbul is a prosperous, stunning, happy place.  Almost no discernable poverty- far less than at home in Texas, from what I could see.  I get a feeling of well-being and optimism and happiness. Many people strolling arm-in-arm along the Bosphorus, the deep blue sea that separates the two halves of the city- the European side from the Asian side.

We leave for San Antonio the day after tomorrow. My emotions are all over the map about that.  It means we are going back to a sweet life with family and friends at home, but it also means leaving behind my new family here in Istanbul.  Thank goodness for Skype! I know I'm going to want to stay in close contact with them all.


  1. What a beautiful country, and family... I can see why you are torn. Good flying to you and Ugur.

  2. Such exciting family, new friends, and LOTS of painting reference. Can't wait to see you and talk to you again, but enjoy your last day lingeringly......... :) Safe travel!