Stories on Stones

Stories on Stones

At a time like this, when half the world is on lockdown because of the pandemic, when civility and decency and the very foundations of democracy seem at risk in the face of racist populism and rabid know-nothingness, when the planes are grounded and we can barely venture out of our houses, when our ‘advanced’ [...]

The Bosphorus Ferry

The Bosphorus Ferry

On the Bosphorus Ferry For a couple of weeks now I have been meaning to post these images from a ferry ride up the Bosphorus - there are plenty of sight-seeing trips you can book, to explore Istanbul from the water, but the ferry is the simplest and most affordable, offering a two-hour round-trip from [...]

Fish sandwiches by the Galata Bridge

Fish sandwiches by the Galata Bridge

For cheap, fast and filling you can't beat a fish sandwich down by Istanbul's Galata Bridge. It's a hugely popular snack, often eaten with a glass of pickle juice to wash it all down. I recommend the sandwich, but won't vouch for the pickle juice! Eating a fish sandwich off the boat by Istanbul's Galata [...]

Istanbul Archeological Museums

Istanbul Archeological Museums

Istanbul, formerly Constantinople, is as we all know a modern yet ancient and historic city planted at the crossroads of East and West. So it is not surprising, I guess, given its history and place, that the collection of antiquities held in the three institutions that make up Istanbul's Archeological Museums is quite extraordinary - [...]

Istanbul Lokanta

Istanbul Lokanta

The lokanta is the place to eat, if you are an ordinary citizen of Istanbul, looking for something affordable, delicious, and nourishing to fill your tummy and keep you going. Rob and I popped into our neighbourhood lokanta one evening, and were not disappointed. And boy, do those cooks and servers work hard! Lokanta, Istanbul

The Basilica Cistern, Istanbul

The Basilica Cistern, Istanbul

The Basilica Cistern in Istanbul is an underground wonder, an engineering marvel, dating back to the 6th century. Guidebook photographs show serried columns eerily surrounded by water, echoed in their watery reflections. The water had been drained, unfortunately, when we were there, for repairs, so some of the magic was missing, at least to my [...]

A little girl and boy chatter away, oblivious to the grandeur of the Hagia Sophia

A little girl and boy chatter away, oblivious to the grandeur of the Hagia Sophia

My post last week tried to show something of the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul - a glimpse, I hope, of more than just appearances - what does this look like? - but photographs that, perhaps, maybe, if I am lucky, encourage us to ask, what does this mean, what does it represent, what does it [...]

The Hagia Sophia in Istanbul

The Hagia Sophia in Istanbul

The Hagia Sofia in Istanbul is difficult to grasp, in its sprawling immensity, its architectural grandeur, its layered complexity. You think to yourself, as you look about, at its enormous dome, its towering columns, this place is more than 1400 years old - and where was Europe, back in the fifth century? The Hagia Sophia, [...]

Young man on the town, Istanbul

Young man on the town, Istanbul

I love this image of a young man out on the town, in Istanbul, early one evening. With his cool red sneakers, nonchalant cigarette, airy wave of greeting to someone who is out of the frame, he seems an expression of the city, an embodiment of hip young city-dwellers everywhere. Of course, a city as [...]