Sadly, the Turkish government doesn’t allow you to take pictures of all the fun things in the Topkapi Palace. We lost count of the number of times a guard yelled at a cruise ship tourist, “no photo, no photo.” So pretend like you see photos of glass boxes with emeralds the size of limes and swords that may or may not have been about five feet long. No seriously, it was almost as tall as me. Besides the amazing things insides, the grounds, the intricacy of the tiles/inlay/etc and the views were amazing. Also great were the reminders not to touch the artifacts on the side of the road.
The Patterns. I can’t say enough about the patterns. I couldn’t stop myself from repeatedly saying “oh my gosh how did they do all of this…oh wait, forced labor.” But beautiful nonetheless. The tiles! Everything was tiled. The walls, doorways, ceilings, everything!
And what is a palace without a harem. Because does it really feel like home if you don’t have enough space for your wives, concubines, their children, and…oh, your mother. Awkward turtle. But at least it was pretty.
And then there were those views, amazing, but from the male-only side of the palace…can’t give those women a good view, they could rise up in revolt. Turkish Spring. Too Soon? Maybe.
The best part of the palace included another crazy Turkish man who like all started his conversation with “are you from the states?” After a yes, he responded with the normal follow up of where, we said DC and he asked where. That wasn’t the typical response. So I just go with NE DC, and he announces his son is at GWU. Over the course of our short interaction we learn that he is a rug wholesaler, he and his wife live in Florida, and that he can give us advice on buying a Turkish rug. I laughed and just said, well I can’t actually afford a Turkish rug but they are great. He suggests that I put it on credit, but then came the best suggestion. “How old are you? No, you do not look that old. Do you have a boyfriend? He can buy you a rug? No boyfriend? It is sad that you have been single for so long. Can I set you up with someone? I know men in Washington. Not the kind of men you know. They are older, they have money, they buy you Turkish carpet.” Oh my lord all I could think was yes that really just happened.
Next time, Ann & Whitney get on a boat, run around an island and face Whitney’s horrible fear of dying from a tall place.