To Market, to Market

What a week America has had. I held off posting, because it seemed kind of frivolous to be talking about my great vacation when such awful things were happening. Being 12 hours off from the East Coast gave me an experience that was slightly different than yours. I first heard of the bombings as I woke up, from Facebook posts–the same way I learned of the Newtown school shootings. My Friday morning I decided to see what was going on and turned the tv on to CNN, something I’ve only done a handful of times while here.

I didn’t turn off the tv the rest of the day. News was happening so fast Thursday night, the news feed became like a tv drama–turn away for a few minutes and you’d miss something important. By your Friday morning, the pace of new news slowed considerably and everyone was back to saying the same thing a hundred different ways. It was quite an experience and whether they want to admit it or not, I’m sure those news people were thrilled that something so intense was happening!

I personally am happy that the people of Boston can breath a sigh of relief. I wish a speedy recovery for those hurt in Boston and in Texas.

And really, as irritating as it is to hear those news people jabber on about nothing, I’d say that that’s probably a good thing, considering the alternative.

And now to the post I wrote:

There’s nothing I like better than a good market in a foreign country.

Not far from our hotel was a street of shops–ok, kind of touristy, but there were some interesting things for sale.

Photos - 6426Love these pillows

Photos - 6428

Mosaic lamps–very Turkish

Photos - 6429

Also very Turkish

Photos - 6430

Photos - 6431Hand crocheted ponchos!

Photos - 6433

Scarves are popular around the world.

Photos - 6435

More mosaic lamps

Be prepared to salivate. Turkish delight and Baklava are rampant in Istanbul. It was amazing. Here’s just a few pictures from a favorite store close to our hotel.

Photos - 6436

Who knew there were this many kinds of Turkish Delight? Our favorite was honey and pistachio.Photos - 6437

Different variations of baklava.

Photos - 6438 Photos - 6439

There’s a whole line of desserts that use shredded wheat (no, I don’t think it’s Nabisco’s!) in different ways.

Photos - 6440

Different kind of shredded wheat dessert

Photos - 6441

Nougat with Turkish Delight on either side

Photos - 6446

We thought it’d be nice to go to the Blue Mosque and check it out, but it was closed for several hours for Friday prayers.

Photos - 6447

We were able to go into the courtyard though.

Photos - 6449 Photos - 6450

Men seemed to be endlessly pouring out of the mosque.

Photos - 6452

The mihrab, which points the direction to Mecca

Photos - 6453 Photos - 6455

Washing before prayers.

Photos - 6456

Not sure what was going on with these trees.

Photos - 6458

There were already long lines to get into the mosque and it wasn’t going to be open for quite awhile, so we decided to go to the Grand Bazaar and look for yarn. Might not get to see the inside of that mosque, but that’s ok–there’s no shortage of mosques to see in Istanbul!

Photos - 6460

Close up. Beautiful building but no indication whether it was a mosque or had some other use. (It had no minarets)

Photos - 6461

That’s a lot of lamps!

Photos - 6468

It’s was cold out, but that didn’t stop people from eating outside.

Photos - 6469

Yet another lamp shop

Photos - 6470

Think this was an important gate, but don’t know anything about it.

Photos - 6471

Street inside the gate

Photos - 6472

Another beautiful building

Photos - 6473

The gate to the Grand Bazaar. Construction on the Bazaar began in 1461!

Photos - 6474

Bag store

Photos - 6475

More fabulous ceilings inside the bazaar.

Photos - 6478 Photos - 6480 Photos - 6482

Gold bracelet store

Photos - 6483

It may be the exit gate, but it’s supposed to take us to yarn!

Photos - 6484

Hmm…any ideas? I don’t have any!

Photos - 6485

For some reason, it was considerably more crowded out here.

Photos - 6486

Must be getting close–where there’s fabric, there’s usually yarn!

Photos - 6487

So beautiful

Photos - 6488

This is where the locals shop.

Photos - 6489

Kurkcu Han! We found it! Ok, we did have a little help from a couple of people as we stood puzzling out the map at crucial spots.

 Photos - 6490

Who wants to look like a sultan?

Photos - 6492

The store I shopped in–crammed with yarn!

Photos - 6491

Happy knitter!

Photos - 6493

Some locals enjoying the sun in the square around the yarn stores.

Photos - 6494

Back out, to find our way back to the hotel

Photos - 6495

Wow, who wears this and when?

Photos - 6496

Wanted to charge me for taking the picture 🙂

Photos - 6497

This was our best discovery of the day–pomegranate juice. Trust me, Pom Wonderful doesn’t hold a candle to the real stuff!

Photos - 6498

Photos - 6499

Street musicians

Photos - 6500

Lady bug cakes!

Photos - 6501

Roasted chestnuts are a favorite street food–and they peel them for you here, unlike China where you just have to struggle.

Street scenes:

Photos - 6502 Photos - 6503 Photos - 6504

Photos - 6505

The bubble man, seen everywhere on the streets of Istanbul

Photos - 6506

This guy didn’t seem to actually be able to play this instrument. Perhaps that’s why he looked so sad.

Photos - 6507

Tiny tables and chairs! Where the men drink Turkish coffee or this nasty liquor called Rika.

Photos - 6511

Photos - 6512Beautiful gate

Meredith found our way back to the hotel remembering all the twists and turns we had made, without using the map! Clever, young brains.

Photos - 5612

Elevator flowers


About DECRYPTKNIT: knitter on the loose in Shanghai

Hi, I'm Marisa Newhouse, a former pharmacist (for a brief time during the Reagan administration) who's real calling was probably anything that has to do with cooking, plants, literature and especially knitting; hence my last and favorite job, working at Woolyminded, a wonderful yarn store. But now, I have moved half a world away to Shanghai where my husband will be working. Lots of people are interested in what we will be doing here and I have always kept journals of our travels, so I thought I'd do it the modern way and keep a blog.
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2 Responses to To Market, to Market

  1. Jean says:

    Holy Yarnoly Batman!! Glad I don’t have to count their inventory!

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