Sunday, July 27, 2008

Friday, July 18, 2008

a top is a top is a magic topaç

Yesterday I was wandering and came upon this little street (everywhere is a little street with a mix of glorious old buildings in various states of decay but) which had almost no car traffic, with kids playing and laundry out. There were woodshops up and down the street, and I stopped to marvel at a man wading through wood shavings in a tiny shop with a loft. He was mostly a lather and welcomed me inside when he saw me staring. Picking out a wooden top out of a lidded lathed bowl of tops, he gave it a spin on the band saw. He said I could play with it and he didn't seem to expect it back.

His shop.

Benim topaç.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Hacı Aslanlar

First the şalvar.

How to travel with wooden spoons.

The bus stop is a nice place to hang out.

They are shaded and in the trees by the road, some simple decks.

We will find some more at a lovely spot near the village.

Who is at Grandma's?

Let me see....

Ah! You're a little fuzzy.

Kim var??

Maşallah, Maşallah!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

In my hood...Bozkurt Mahallesi

I am staying with my friend here in Istanbul, and she tells me her neighborhood is a mish-mosh of long-established Armenian families & Christians, trendy students and Transgendered folks. This makes for a very lively environment here on Eşref Efendi Sokak, sometimes at all hours of the day and night. At first I was a little sad that I can only hear one muezzin at prayer times, but I am not missing out on the Aygaz song (maybe you can find an example on youtube- it's banned here! x-( ).
On my daily walk up the street to the main intersection, I have come to know the shops, grocers, kuaförü, decayed buildings, and the various sleeping dogs and cats and the order in which I'll encounter them. The animals are more predictable than the construction wreckage or the games and hijinks of the children. Anyway, Burcu explained to me how the Armenian families living up on the upper floors often call down to the shop owners from their windows to get such and such, lowering baskets. With their accents, as a whole it is free entertainment.