Good morning from Istanbul! Monday morning we reunited after a weekend (Tom Thorpe arrived on Saturday night) and headed in different directions. The stories we heard were exciting: a wedding, lots of shopping, soccer games, and stories of the sites and scenes (and stores) of Istanbul. Sunday was absolutely beautiful, which was well deserved after a very rainy Saturday.
First thing Monday morning, we were interviewed by the Communications Director of UAA and a journalist who works for the Parent Foundation, called SEV. They plan to write an article about the exchange for the school’s monthly magazine. Our exchange has turned into a pilot for exchanges with SEV’s other schools in Istanbul, Tarsus, and Izmir.
From there we piled in the bus and headed to Miniaturk, which is an outdoor exhibit of models of all the historical sights in Turkey. It was a great opportunity for us to remember what we have seen so far, and to realize how much more there is to see. The girls decided to really embrace this:
After Miniaturk, we visited the Chora Church/Museum, which is the finest example of Byzantine, Christian influence in the city. The more than 700-year-old mosaics are still in tact and gave us all insight into the pre-Muslim culture of Istanbul. Of course, it had been about two hours since we last ate, so after Chora we sat down for a huge meal followed by baklava from the very famous baklava maker, Gulluoglu:
Our day ended at the Galata Tower where we could see 360 degrees of Istanbul. It was breathtaking and provided a great perspective of all the sight and sounds of the city.
Jon headed back to Colorado today. We wish him safe travels and will miss him as we carry on with the adventures.
Right now we are on the way to visit Dogan Media, home the Turkey’s largest newspaper, CNN Turkey, and more!