Bayside, New York
August 18, 2001
The smell of roasting kebap is going to be everywhere, as they had also set up outdoor grills with fresh lamb, and on the side were the tomatoes, cucumbers, onion and pide which is the equivalent of the pita bread, only tastier. I am fairly certain that this is for the citizens of Istanbul more so than the tourists, as we were in the minority here. But we nevertheless walked through the area, which is immense, as is everything else in Istanbul. You'll find "designer" jeans which are made in Turkey; Bursa has quite a reputation for its cotton mills. Jackets, leather shoes, pajamas, baby clothes, sweaters, and even toy trucks. We couldn't resist purchasing Acqua di Gio for each one of us for an absurd price. We wore it for the rest of the trip, and it was great.
On the plaza, we saw 2 adorable children looking at our camera, and their mother was not too far away. She was clad with the black scarf over her head, and all the way down to her toes. She had a cigarette in her right hand. She appeared to be an anachronism in her own country. She protectively held her children back and didn't permit us to take their picture. We smiled and continued walking. Chuck was fascinated by the cooking of the lamb and stood watching for quite a while. If you like flea market atmosphere, you'll get your fill here.
From journal The Wait for Turkey - Finally!