Monday, April 6, 2015

Dreams Come True


Ever since I first heard the words in grade 2 or 3 geography, I have wanted to see the places that were called Constantinople, Bosporus, Golden Horn, Haghia Sophia, Istanbul, and Sea of Marmara; that place of intersection, of what seemed like the centre of the world. It drew me like a compass finding magnetic north. All I needed to do was convince J. We spent a week in that city, in a small hotel nestled into the great walls of the Haghia Sophia, waking each morning to the haunting Call to Prayer, walking the streets, up and down the hills, taking ferries up the Golden Horn and across the Bosporus, to Asia and towards the Black Sea, We walked the Hippodrome where the odalisques were looted from Egypt by the Romans and then further looted by the Venetians  [you can see the horses on the plinths in St Mark's Square in Venice]. It was an extraordinary time for me, a dreamscape made real, it was haunting, it was a parallel time and it was a dream come true.


Looking out the windows from the Haghia Sophia towards The Blue Mosque. 2015

Light streaming through the windows of the Haghia Sophia. 2015

The Basilica Cistern, laid out in 532, the roof held up by 336 columns, water reached the cistern which held about 2 million gal. from the Belgrade Forest, 12 miles north of Istanbul. 2015

The brick domes in the old part of  The Grand Bazaar, 2015

Taking the ferry up the Bosphorus towards the Black Sea. In the distance is the Ataturk Bridge joining Europe and Asia, 2015

One of the domes at the Church of St. Saviour in Chora, undergoing restoration, I loved the frescos


video

The Call to Prayer, recorded by accident the 1st night we were in Istanbul, a happy find on my camera. [Hopefully this will work!]

12 comments:

  1. great..I love constantinople too ! and thank you for trhe muezzin ! it is like I was there...
    christine boiry

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    1. Thanks Christine, the muezzin was one of those serendipitous things. I loved our days being marked by the call to prayer.

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  2. Fantastic experience and wonderful that your dream has come true. The frescoes look beautiful and I particularly like the ceiling of The Grand Bazaar. I remember visiting Turkey in the early 80's and again was woken by the morning call for prayer, like you I found it enthralling and haunting. I don't travel far these days due to expense but enjoy sharing others experiences especially when it is interesting. Thank you.

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    1. Thanks so much Lynn, it was a very special time for us, and one I am still processing. Not sure that I am really home yet.

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  3. Your few words and photos are more inspirational than scores of pictures shared by half a dozen of my friends who have visited Istanbul. The call to prayer worked technically and emotionally - I think I need to visit! Thanks for sharing

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    1. Thank you Joan, I urge you to go, it was even more than I dreamed of!

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  4. Great set of pics! Brick domes ... wow................

    Thank you for sharing them with us.

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  5. i remember first hearing those words, too, constantinople, bosporus, sophia...what place could hold them?! beautiful.

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    1. Thank you Velma, that is a perfect way to put it...what place could hold them. That's what I was seeking.

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I appreciate your thoughts and comments; thanks for taking the time.