Welcome to Istanbul

” ‘I cannot accept your money…’  The Turk is pleasantly surprised and leaves the shop.  The next morning when the barber opens his shop, he finds a thank you card and a box of lokum waiting at his door.”
-from page 56 of The Bastard of Istanbul by Elif Shafak

There is actually much more to the extract above than an example of Turkish welcome and kindness, but I won’t spoil the book for you.  This excellent novel was part of my Istanbul reading list and proved to be a thoroughly enjoyable and interesting way to get a feel for the country.

I am back now and my overriding memory is of the friendliness and hospitality of the locals.  As a photographer with a particular enjoyment of street photography, I have never been anywhere where people were so happy to be captured on film – sorry, showing my age, on digital media.  My week in Istanbul simply flew by and I shall most definitely return soon to make yet more new friends.

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Copyright Debbie Smyth, 1 May 2015
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9 thoughts on “Welcome to Istanbul

  1. I’d love to read this book! I read another by Elif that I enjoyed. Instanbul is on my bucket list as I want to visit Constantinople. 🙂
    Happy weekend!

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    1. This is my first of hers, but I’ll be reading more. And I’ll be returning to Istanbul too

      On Sat, May 2, 2015 at 4:34 PM, Travel with Intent wrote:

      >

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  2. I’ve wanted to go to Istanbul for such a long time! And the more I read about it, the more I’m convinced I NEED to live in the city myself, for at least some time. What a great photo, and a lovely excerpt. I’m yet to read that book but I’ve tremendously enjoyed some others set in Istanbul (my most recent being Orhan Pamuk’s ‘My Name is Red’), so I will add this one you quote to my reading list – thank you. 🙂

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  3. I have been wanting to go to Istanbul for so long because it looks like a fascinating place! I have been slacking a bit in the travel department although I went to Krakow last autumn! That beginning is also beautiful, I love those little examples of human kindness! Thanks for sharing 🙂 I hope you have a great weekend!
    My Friday post
    Juli @ Universe in Words

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    1. It is an absolute must. Don’t leave it too long before you go as I’m sure you’ll want to make plenty of return visits!
      Krakow is till on my list

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    1. I do at the moment – lucky me. Though it gets a bit much at times. Touch down, unpack, repack and off again.
      Istanbul is right up there amongst my favourite cities

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