I’ll admit that it’s been difficult to find the motivation to do much the past couple weekends. This is in part because I’m trying to save my money for a long vacation in August (deposits are made and there’s no going back now!), but also in part because only something really worthwhile can justify putting on pants and braving the heat. I think part of what makes Istanbul so ungodly hot is all the cement and pavement that sprawls everywhere, uninterrupted by anything natural or green or shady, absorbing and radiating every ray of the blazing sun. You know what it’s like to walk across a parking lot to get to your car on a blistering summer afternoon? That’s what it often feels like to walk through Istanbul nowadays. I’m told that I’ll be begging for sunshine come November, but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it, because right now all I know is that it’s damn hot outside and November is over three months away.
I’ve been trying to contend with the heat, then, mostly from the comfort of my apartment, but sometimes a worthwhile opportunity does present itself and I will venture out into the concrete jungle. Such was the case last weekend, when I joined my friends Candas and Vida for a trip to the Rahmi M. Koç Museum.
The Koç’s are probably Turkey’s wealthiest family, owning a conglomerate of over 100 companies that produce everything from cars to food to appliances. The Koç Museum is a mostly private collection dedicated to transportation and industry, and was inspired by the eponymous founder’s visit to the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan. Call it indulgent and excessive, but I would do the same thing if I had obscene wealth and owned enough vintage cars to fill a several buildings. Plus, it’s actually a pretty neat place, and it seems as though Turks and tourists alike appreciate what it offers.
After the museum, we decided to head to the nearby Pierre Loti cafe at its pristine perch above the Golden Horn. The cafe is named after a French novelist who would enjoy the vista while penning his stories, and now it stands as a popular tourist spot. The area really does have the finest view of Istanbul I’ve seen, but it was too crowded to stay for very long. We had some snacks, then went for a short walk in Bakirkoy along the Sea of Marmara.
Overall it proved to be a lovely Sunday!
I’ve got one more week of work left, then a few more days in Istanbul before I start my traveling. I’ll write about the details when it’s all ironed out, but in the meantime, all my love!