Day three in Istanbul (Sep 12)

Our third and almost last day ere – tomorrow we leave for Goreme in Cappadocia.

We saw the Blue Mosque and the Aya Sophia today – both have great stories. The Mosque is incredibly simple on the inside – mostly a wide open space with 4 enormous supports – each one about 5 meters around.

The Sophia was the largest enclosed space for more than a thousand years – it was built in the 600’s – and in only 5 years. They has 1,000 craft workers and 10,000 laborers working on it. And the support colums from one floor to the next aren’t on top of each other – quite an engineering feat!

I can’t but compare to, say, the Kingdome – also built at public expense, with as many or more workers, boasting a concrete ceiling of unparalleled size – and blown up just a few decades after it was built. Te Sophia has crack the floor is uneven and so on – but it still serves Istanbul today.

We finished our day with a walk through the Grand Bazaar. Some think it a tourist trap, and there is some of that to be sure. And yet – these vendors are all working for a living, and the alleys and streets on the outside (the bazaar proper is covered) were incredibly vibrant.

We bought grilled.corn before we went in- and as I stood to look for a trash bin, the vendor hurried over to take the cob. The Turkish people ave been friendly, talentd and courteous. I can’t wait to see another part of the country!

Sent from Patrick’s phone

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