My Istanbul

We had lunch at the new Kitchenette in Bebek today. The building looks gorgeous, one of the finest buildings in Istanbul (according to my humble taste), but the service wasn't that good. Everything we wanted to order, we had to ask 3 times, and that didn't even guarantee getting what we wanted. Fortunately it was in our favor to not be able to order dessert.
Kitchenette, an English word, kitchen, and a French suffix, -ette. And what happens when you have to visit restroom at Kitchenette? Well, you have to look for the sign that says Toilettes, which is supposed to give a flair to good old "toilets". The Kitchenette people must have a thing for that kind of mix up . . .

After lunch I walked home by the waterside, on my own. The weather was wonderful. Just a beautiful Istanbul day with the sun shining on the water, seagulls fighting over the
available fish, and fishermen checking out the girls who walk by.
I admit that sometimes I feel sad about leaving this place. Leaving all this organized mess behind me, with all the colors of nature but also the pulse of a metropolitan city. There were times I thought I should leave, but I guess never really wanted to leave all my dreams behind, which were closely interrelated with this place I tried so hard to get to since I was 16. But the time to go is coming closer, and something inside me says this is the way it should be. And the Turkish men who stare at me as I walk by the sea enjoying the nice day like everyone else is, don't help change my mind. Neither do the 'women in black', that I see around almost every day of the week that I go out now. Maybe it's not 'my Istanbul' anymore, maybe the city has fallen.

But it's still the place that holds a lot of my dearest friends and fondest memories.

(pictures by pelin)


Vinod Jose said…

I read your nostalgic account of Istanbul, the changing and not so changing face of it...

I wish to visit Istanbul, but most of the times I am so broke, I never seem to be getting anywhere...

I spotted - High fidelity and God of Small Things on your list of favorite books. Have you seen the movie 'High Fidelity'; if you have not, do not miss it..

Have you read the non-fiction works of Arundhati Roy, its quite India centric issues, nevertheless, remarkable. Do you read other Indian authors too?

Have a great week ahead...

-Vinod Jose
Bangalore, India
p e l i n said…
Hi Vinod,

I hope you can visit Istanbul someday. It's a good place to be.

I am aware of Ms. Roy's other works but I can't say I had the opportunity to focus on them. I'd like too, though. I read some works of Salman Rushdie as well, I like his literary style.

And I've seen the movie High Fidelity. It's one of my favorite movies, mostly due to John Cusack :)

Thanks for your comment!

Vinod Jose said…
Hi Pelin,

I discovered High Fidelity quite by chance; I saw the movie first and then read the book. Nick Hornby has written a new book, Slam, have you read that one?

Runaway Jury too is a brilliant movie w/ am amazin performance by John.

Wanted to check with you which camera do you use; the photographs of Istanbul uploaded on the blog are quite impressive.

p e l i n said…
I think I watched the movie first too, and then discovered Nick Hornby and how funny and cool he is. I also like David Sedaris, he is along the same self-deprecating lines.

My camera is a Canon PowerShot SD750, and the pictures turn out surprisingly well every time. Thanks for the comments!

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