Archive for January, 2007

Winter Flirt

The locals will tell you this is one of the weirdest winters in recent memories. Up until a few days ago it was almost beach weather…blue skies and balmy, now we are flirting with snow. It is still not cold enough to stick around, but maybe we will finally see a little of the famous Istanbul winters we have heard about. Figures…just yesterday I saw beachwear out on the shelves. Thanks to my buddy “Pete” for the photo of previous years snow from the same sitesi.
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Unkapanı Bridge…

I guess, we haven’t seen Unkapanı Bridge like that before. This bridge is one of the three bridges over the Golden Horn and it was on the march route during Hrant Dink’s funeral…

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Here is one more shot from the funeral. In front of the building Agos’ offices are…
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Obituaries for Hrant Dink

I was down on the coast when the funeral took place in Istanbul so I couldn’t cover it but I’d like to link to a couple of people who wrote excellent pieces on the subject. These entries might give you more insight on the matter at hand.

The InfidelThe Funeral
Erkan’s field diaryThe Funeral
Metin from Talk TurkeyDink Funeral & The Missing Leaders

May your soul rest in peace Mr. Dink!

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Protesters stage a sit-in as they hold pictures of Turkish-Armenian editor Hrant Dink to protest his killing in Istanbul January 19, 2007. Dink, who was convicted last year for insulting Turkey’s identity, was shot dead outside his newspaper office in Istanbul on Friday. The leaflets read, ‘We all are Hirant. We all are Armenians’. REUTERS

Journey Through İstanbul

By photos of Zeynep:

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From birds on her window pane to Turkish coffee cups; from seagulls flying over Bosphorus to swinging laundries on clotheslines strecthed over streets; from lovely faces of children to musicians’ gifted fingers; from jazz ferries to trains, from rakı scatters like clouds, like mist in long, thin rakı glasses to… well…in short to everything that an İstanbul lover can experience: this is what Zeynep sees, shows and shares…

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Her photos tell stories of İstanbul without needing a word… her photos speak for themselves…and speak rather well…

The ones who miss İstanbul… the ones who want to know İstanbul can take a journey through İstanbul by Zeynep’s photos…see the life in İstanbul…see living İstanbul…

(Seeing the life in istanbul and seeing the living İstanbul in her photos is the reason why I love Zeynep’s photos. Another reason is the way she sees details, such as the pigeon’s flying, the effort of the kid when passing the saltshaker, the effort, impatience and appetite visible on the face of another kid when trying to get a banana.)

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Photos: Courtesy of Zeynep
Thank you!…

BBC advisor in town!

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This Friday morning Mr. Smith will be lecturing on Representation of Children on Media. For the last 18 months, Paul Smith has been working in the BBC’s editorial Policy unit, advising producers and developing policy for the BBC.

Speaker: Paul Smith (Editorial Political Advisor, BBC)
Date: January 19, 2006 Friday
Time: 11:00 a.m.
Place: İstanbul Bilgi University Dolapdere Campus, BS 1
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Ebru: Turkish Marbling

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Photo: Courtesy of BÜMED

Ebru has always fascinated me-the patterns, the colours… how colours blend into each other: colours dissolving into each other yet being there independently…

BÜMED-alumni association of Boğaziçi University- arranges series of lessons on ebru.
Those of you who are interested in those ebru courses can find information here or contact through 0212 359 58 13 or 0212 359 58 19 for information and reservation.

I’ll be there…

Visa for Istanbul?

This is not totally new. But Mr. Erdoğan was more vocal this time and stated his wish to limit migration and car ownership in Istanbul. However, paying to enter downtown areas seems to be more plausible, not to mention the issues of citizens’ right for mobility… Well, Turkish citizens were hoping to move in Europe freely but they might not even move within Turkey if Mr. Erdoğan’s wish can be realized….

Wintertime Islands

After several days break the fog has come back today.
In the meantime we had a mild and sunny Sunday, which I regarded as an opportunity to go to Islands.

Walking on the narrow, steep or stepped streets of Heybeliada while adoring those old, elegant wooden houses, sometimes losing myself in carvings of doors or windows of those houses, eavesdropping talks of chatty seagulls, talking with extremely well-fed, cuddly cats of Heybeliada, watching the clear blue sea and sky and also İstanbul at the distance through those wooden houses or pine trees, walking through the pine forest and smelling that pleasant smell of pines.

In one of my previous posts I wrote: “I love strolling on the Islands…during winter, I should add, during which I can hear my footsteps..during which I hear nothing except my own footsteps. Naturally far away sounds of waves can be heard… and the sound that wind creates among pine trees. Those are the times I meet noone, but cats and maybe dogs. Those are the times the Islands are deserted, but not dejected.”

Well…if you go to Islands nowadays, you can smell pine trees, see beautiful landscape and houses, hear talks of seagulls, dogs and cats, spend a few hours enjoying peace and solitude… and hear your own footsteps… Do you have any chance to hear your own footsteps on the streets of İstanbul? (Except the ladies who wear those exremely high-heeled shoes!) You will have all these plus ached legs because of climbing steep streets:)

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The red church…well it is Agia Nikola Church, but since I was a little girl I kept on calling it as “Red Church” Do I have to explain why?

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I suddenly came across a small tangerine tree loaded with its orange coloured fruits in a garden of a house… I clapped my hands in delight: because of İstanbul’s high latitude and its average weather conditions are much colder than usual citrus growing regions, citrus trees are rare in İstanbul. But still Istanbulites try to cultivate citrus trees for decoration purposes and coming across them when they are loaded with fruits makes ‘gloomy’ winter days shine…

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Cuddly cats of Islands are not only chubby but also chose the weirdest places to sit!

I’ll be quite out of the topic now: when we will have the real winter? Rain and snow? It snowed at the beginning of November and from then on nothing! No rain, no snow…

Mystifying Fog

We had a droughty autumn: no rain…
We’re having a droughty winter: no rain…
Fog has been the dominating predicament for İstanbulites! (Not for me-I’m willing to undergo diffuculties of the fog to experience the beauty it creates…)
But the last two days’ fog is different: the densest fog…

It was impossible to see half meter away. I felt like I was driving in a lost place-no souls, no cars, no lights-nothing to be seen except the erratically flitting fog.

I felt like I was in the clouds: both physically and emotionally…

Driving and driving and driving in the fog after midnight and then walking and sitting on the shores of Bosphorus and seeing things (yes, nothing could be seen because of fog, but sight is not the only way to ‘see’ things…)

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