This week in Bağdat Caddesi, Istanbul
We are often to be found eating at our favourite restaurant, Café Cadde. It's very popular and usually full to bursting, but because we are regulars we can usually get a table. We've heard that it is an IN place to be. We didn't realise just how IN, until we found ourselves sitting next to Tuncay Sanli, the Stoke City player. With his £5,000,000 transfer fee from Middlesbrough, he can afford to eat anywhere, and he chose our local. He came over to speak to us - such a nice man!
A great thing about living in Bağdat Street is that there is always something going on. We woke up one day last week to find a big hole in the pavement, where some workmen were replacing leaking pipes. Amazingly, it was all cleaned up by the evening, with the pavement completely restored.
On another day, hundreds of cyclists rode by, completely blocking the road and preventing the traffic from moving. I think they were making a statement that the roads are for cyclists too; although weaving in and out of traffic on a bicycle is not my idea of fun - especially in Istanbul - more like suicide!
Our summer series of concerts has begun again. Every Sunday evening throughout the summer, Mithat, a nearby menswear shop, hosts a free operatic concert. We have grandstand seats on our balcony. It's great fun, especially as we are far enough away to join in the singing.