Friday, February 28, 2014

Istanbul, Turkey:




Five days in Istanbul was the way in which I said goodbye to February. Nothing too much was on my agenda while in the city; I was there as a tag-along, and spent much time in my hotel room–which overlooked a very busy intersection, shown above–and read many books and watched many lectures on European history from around 1750 forward. It was wonderful to be in Istanbul, to be able to experience it, and to understand and absorb the streets of this former capital of the Byzantine Empire. One of my favorite moments from the short trip was when I re-read the first chapter of Thinking With Things, just outside the Hagia Sophia, on the place where the city's former hippodrome once stood. A confluence of East and West, Istanbul is teaming with tension.