Another beautiful day for our tour. We began at Topkapi Palace, now Museum, which during the Ottoman Empire was a city within a city, feeding 5K folks a day...shudder at that cooking thought! National treasury stuff on display...jeweled this ‘n that as the royalty had back then, along with lots of china, silver, and thrones on display. Next was St. Sophia...Greek church turned mosque, at which time the icons of Jesus, Mary, etc., were painted over, as there are no Islamic icons allowed, much less any Christian ones. It is a museum these days, so they have ‘unpainted’ the beautiful icons for current viewing.
The Turks are great about recycling...if a column or large urn is lying around and not being used, they erect them on or in another building. A good example was at our next stop, the Basilica Cistern. Way back when built in 6 BC, they just used any old derelict column to build the cistern, after all, it was gonna be flooded with water and no one would see it was all mix and not much match. Wrong, and us tourists paid for that view. Water level is now low and stocked with fish, just for interest and getting the public to pay to see:-)
Next came the Hippodrome (not much left there) and Blue Mosque, famous for all the beautiful, predominately blue mosaics inside, then the Grand Bazaar...one of the world’s largest, original flea markets and a mecca for a true shopaholic, which we are not. We didn’t do much damage there...and came back to the hotel early, tired after all the walking.
Good news: Priven’s suitcase was in the room when we arrived AND dtr #2 got activation on my phone (I am using for texting only), so AT&T is back in my good graces.
Tonight we are being picked up by a driver and taken to the home of a Rotary local, and will be met by another local couple for dinner. Should be interesting. Tomorrow we’ll tour the school that the local Rotary club back home is sponsoring here for the street children to learn computer skills, then head to our ship, which is already docked. Yaaayyyy! Life is good...hugs!