On Istanbul and my 5 minutes of fame
My recent trip to Istanbul was thoroughly enjoyable seeing as though I lament cold weather (bare in mind that it’s European cold weather which is exponentially worse than what we get here in Africa). A bonus though is that South Africa and Turkey are located in similar time zones so jet lag is a myth and of course no one needs that kind of negativity in their lives especially after being cooped up in a plane for endless hours. We thank God though for the beauty of technology and innovation that allows us to be transported in machines that defy the law of gravity and safely deposit us on another side of the world. It wasn’t my first time in Istanbul but it certainly felt like it because for some odd reason I could not recall my first visit there, which was only about 3 years ago but this time I definitely took it in, in a completely different way. There is always more to see, discover and learn. I’m a wanderer by default so I appreciate any opportunity I get to visit a new crevice on this big, beautiful planet.
My general impression of Istanbul is that it is an antique gem. I say antique because even with new developments as with every growing city, it is still characterised by very old buildings that carry the history of the country and it’s people on their foundation setting for a rustic vibe populated by mosques that are an ode to the majority Muslim nationals. I must admit that the weather, all overcast and gloomy didn’t work in favour of displaying the true beauty of the city but much to my fortune the sun showed its face on my last 2 days there and consequently made me realise how much more there was to appreciate and unveiled a hidden beauty in buildings that I had been walking past for days. I’m the type of person who’s temperament is affected by the weather, so seasonally I’m not too optimistic in winter!
The allure of the architecture also gave me ample opportunity to get shutter happy and exercise my penchant for photography. The light that came with the sun was absolutely welcome for various reasons, as aforementioned but also because of the life is brought to the environment and the warm tones that were complimented by the shadows created by the tall buildings and lest I forget the picturesque cobblestone roads of Osmanbey.
It was difficult trying to circumnavigate between documenting my time in Istanbul versus taking in all the sights and sounds. Nothing worse than having only pictures to rely on to remember things, completely neglecting the use of your other senses but you also have somewhat of an obligation to share your trip with your ‘snappers’! This is what the digital era is doing to us, turning us into individuals who live to show other people how we are living, giving everybody the reality while being completely disconnected from it. I however cannot multitask in that regard so I apologise for the boring snaps and Instagram Stories.
Normally I would’ve posted this blog post while in Istanbul and shared more of the photos that I took with my camera but my laptop died on me and I didn’t have an international adapter with me. Rookie mistake on my part!
Oh and guys my green hair was so popular among the masses from the cabin crew to the friendly civilians of IST. I was also called Rihanna a couple of times much to my absolute pleasure. One lovely lady even asked to take a picture with me. I unashamedly revelled in my 5 minutes of fame. I realise now in hindsight that they probably didn’t mean I literally looked like Rihanna but that was probably their way of expressing that they were in the presence of a beautiful woman of colour, since language was a barrier. Nothing warmed my heart more than people saying the word, ‘Mashallah’ to me which by definition basically shows praise & appreciation. Argh, I actually hate how conceited this might come across but I hope you get the gist of what I’m trying to say, I’ve never been so overwhelmed with genuine compliments. It was so refreshing!
I would love to carry on gushing about Istanbul and all it had to offer but there is life outside of 1ne2wenty3hree. I hope you love the photos which were all taken by yours truly.
Till the next post,
Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Photos by: Lerato Maroleng
shot on Canon 100D with 18-55mm lens