Scenes from Istanbul

To be honest, writing about my hometown, the city I've lived in more than a quarter of a century, is way too hard since there are lots of things to mention. 

 

Actually, I love living in Istanbul and I'm happy to be a part of it. But also, I accept it as a whole, with numerous flaws and feeling like a parent who is likely to accept his child with all of her mistakes. Istanbul is not a perfect place with everything almost completed, flawless, plain and ordinary. Here is a place described of seemingly infinite complexity which I really like. Because, if you are the one who chases the rhythm of a city destined to be with irregular heartbeats, chaotic and exciting moments which make you think that "there is nothing under the control", so you would probably love Istanbul as well.

 

The best way to enjoy Istanbul is to get out of regular best-seller guidebooks. The more you head to the streets of less visited neighborhoods like Balat, Arnavutköy, Yeniköy, or Kadıköy, the more you wander another face of Istanbul embracing an authentic spirit. The thing is, though, that taking a route to clichés, such as walking on Istiklal street spotted with a red nostalgic tram in the middle, or passing by the Golden Horn Bridge full of fishermen, can manage to make you overwhelmed. Also, watching the way the sunset slants over the crooked buildings from the top of a hotel in Beyoğlu, eating a traditional fish&bread by the sea in Karaköy, buying some crunchy chestnuts roasted on charcoal at a typical vendor in Taksim, and celebrating moments with a traditional way of eating 'mezze with raki' in Nevizade are a common sight showing you how this city is embraced by different moments. And yet, Istanbul may feel different to anyone, but there is one thing that it cannot be boring.

© 2023 by Deniz Yılmaz Akman

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