31 January 2008

Nazar and the broken mirrors, and other such superstitions

Today I had to seriously clean out our apartment because we had a bad case of nazar (for those of you who don't live in daily contact with the blue evil eye beads that ward us of danger in Turkey). I saged and nazared and whatever else one has to do to bring in good energy because...! First Devrim broke a water glass, then Topi broke our bedroom lamp, and today I broke (sadly) a Sephora compact mirror.

In my online search for techniques to rid one's home of the evil eye, I stumpled upon some funny truths posted by a contributor to Selam Turkey. You know you've been in Turkey too much (or rather for me... You know you've lived in Turkey too long) when:
-You think it's natural to 'close' a light, or to have your phone 'closed'
-You have a cupboard full of dried up Apple Tea that has only been used once
-You would not dream of eating Turkish Delight from you own country
-You call tea: çay
-You call minibuses: the dolmuş
-You call a kebab: a kebap
-You have to suppress the urge to haggle in your shops back home
'Til next time, here's a little blue bead to keep y'all safe and sound from the evil eye... or you can buy one from ebay in 14 carat gold!

21 January 2008

Quiet Corners

These photos taken in Istanbul last fall from a dear friend's balcony are part of a series I want to start called 'quiet corners'. Both Izmit and Istanbul are so busy, that I relish moments where I can not only see but feel a kind of silence.
Beyond the pink school is a church tower -- I don't know when the church was built, but I loved seeing the wooden slats basking in the sun.