© 2012 Elys. All rights reserved. Turkish Delights

Day 424: The Future is Now!

Amman, Jordan – Istanbul, Turkey

I had been quite eager to get to Turkey. I heard all the good things about Istanbul and Cappadocia (middle of Turkey) has been top of the list of places I want to visit.

Istanbul is massive! I reckon it’s even bigger than New York City. In order to be able to visit the main sites in Istanbul, I had booked a hostel in Sultanahmet area, which is the main historic and touristic district.

Arriving in Sultanahmet is almost like arriving in Disneyland. It’s a picture-perfect tourist town.  AyaSophia and Blue Mosque and their towering minarets seemed to me the equivalent of Disney castles. The pebbled alleyways, stone walls and cute stores are like a charming medieval town in fairy tales. I was blown away. Istanbul made Amman look like a drab and sad city.

Also a reason for me to be excited about Istanbul is to finally meet Behic in person. I have known Behic for 14 years. It was back in 1998 when we were both obsessive “Suedeheads” (Suede being a Britpop band in the era of Oasis, Blur, Pulp etc.) I was in Indonesia during the time and getting hold of Britpop music was hard. It was the same for Behic in Turkey. So if either of us acquired any good music, we would trade cassette tapes via snail mail (Cassette??? I know, I’m old). The correspondence modernized later to CD-trading then to MP3-trading. Besides music, Behic and I also wrote letters and I even knew his middle school classmate from back then, Cansun.

To meet up with Behic, I took the ferry from the European side of Istanbul to the Asian, crossing the Bosphorus Strait. It’s incredible to think that some Istanbul-ians cross continents twice a day. Behic picked me up at the ferry port and treated me to Turkish dinner, coffee and ice cream. Cansun couldn’t join us but he made it a point to meet up, albeit briefly. It was a great feeling to finally see the two of them. It was funny to realize that I didn’t even know how to pronounce Behic’s and Cansun’s names properly when we first met. I guess now they are no longer “virtual” friends :]

Less virtual friends = less nerdy and pathetic?

I never deem it to be so. I always thought that the Internet is a fair mean of communication and social networking. Anyway, a quote from Jim Carrey’s character in the movie “The Cable Guy“:

“The future is now! Soon every American home will integrate their television, phone and computer. You’ll be able to visit the Louvre on one channel, or watch female wrestling on another. You can do your shopping at home, or play Mortal Kombat with a friend from Vietnam. There’s no end to the possibilities!”

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