All The Time In The World

All The Time In The World

We have leisurely covered all the must see sights in 9 days, and are now looking for things to do and see.

We went to Kadiköy, on the Asian side of Istanbul, a week ago for our food tour, and enjoyed the market place as well as all the hip areas with the bars and cafes. We thought we’d hop across the Bosphorus and check out a different town. Üsküdar is the next town over, and one ferry stop away. Plus it’s got mosques galore.

We left early so that I could beat all the Instagrammers to the Galata Tower.

Then we were off to Eminönü to catch the ferry.

The trip costs 3.65TL ($0.48) each person. NYC MTA is charging $2.75 per ride and is $16 billion in the hole. Either public transportation in Istanbul is subsidized, or the MTA is terribly mismanaged.

Once at Üsküdar, we made a bee line toward the mosque. When we got there, we were told that the mosque is closed for cleaning. So we went to the next one. Same thing. By the time we got to the 3rd mosque with the same result, we gave up. We suspect they clean on Friday mornings in preparation for the Friday noon prayer.

Luckily, Üsküdar has something else up her sleeve – the library.

Joe reminded me to take a picture of the library for Faith because she likes to visit libraries when she travels.
So Faith, this one is for you.

Since we still had over an hour before lunch, we decided to walk along the waterfront. This is when we realized that we now have all the time in the world now that we’re both retired. I don’t think the whole notion of retirement has really sunk in yet because we’ve been busy traveling. Right now it just feels like an extended vacation before work starts up again. I suspect it’ll finally hit me after a few more weeks.

A nice stroll along the waterfront
A view of the European side of Istanbul, with the Old Town on the left, and the New District to the right.
On our way to lunch, we saw these guys diving for conch.

Confession: One thing I noticed while walking in Üsküdar is the number of women wearing head coverings and burkas. While on the European side, we would see a smattering of women dressed conservatively, but the great majority of women dress like you would find in Western countries. It didn’t strike me then, but it was later when we got back to the European side that I felt weight lifting off my shoulders. The sense of relief stemmed from the fact that I was back in familiar territory. I was very surprised by my own feelings.

Once back in our neighborhood, we headed for some pudding and Turkish coffee @ Karaköy Muhallebicisi (pudding in Turkish).

Rice pudding is now my favorite Turkish dessert, and I can eat it every day.

But then I would risk looking like little Gordita here

We picked up some provisions @ Carrefour – 5L of water, 2.5lbs of prunes, 2 lbs of grapes, 4 apples, and a pack of hazelnut cookies.

There’s no way we would ever be able to get all this in the US for $3.55!

Total for today – $47

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