The Joys of Spring in Istanbul, Turkey

Spring has arrived in Istanbul. The trees are bursting into life, the people are shedding their winter coats and dining alfresco is becoming the norm once more. The smokers are out in force again, having been reduced to sitting at outside tables during the harshest of winter days, or made to pop outside for a quick one and hang about guiltily like naughty schoolboys. Now they can puff away with abandonment as they enjoy the fresh(?) air - cigarette in one hand and fork in the other.

The cheerful crowd offering alternative venues to Midpoint.

Midpoint, the restaurant next door, is very popular with the Ferrari-driving in-crowd and is never short of customers. This obviously rankles with some of the other restaurants, but they have tried to lure away Midpoint's customers in a fun way. Yesterday, a band came marching down the road with banner-waving waiters from several restaurants. The banners advertised offers and discounts that they wanted the Midpoint customers to know about. Television cameras were there, and the manager of Midpoint even came out and stood with the marchers and waved to the cameras. There's never a dull moment in Baghdad Street.

In the evening, we met up with our friends, Gabriela and Mustafa as well as Annie and Fatih, who are over on holiday from Australia. We had such fun. We had dinner in the Adamar Hotel in Sultanahmet in their Panoramic Restaurant, overlooking the Hagia Sophia, the Topkapi Palace, the Blue Mosque, the Princes' Islands, the Bosphorus and the Sea of Marmara. What an amazing view! As you can imagine, this is a very popular location and it is necessary to book well in advance. The meal was delicious and we had such a good time catching up with each other's news.

Mustafa, David and Gabriela, with the Hagia Sophia behind them. What an amazing view we had!

Annie, Me and Fatih, with the Blue Mosque behind us.

The Hagia Sophia looked quite beautiful as the sun was setting.

On Wednesday, David and I are off to Perth for our niece Tammy's wedding. We are so looking forward to spending time with, at least some, of our family. The Wedding is on Saturday. The following Monday, David will return to Istanbul while I will go back to Ellerston with Suzi, Neil and Katelyn. Watch out for my next post - wedding photos.

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