Istanbul, the Magic Love City

A Youth Backpacker in Europe

Part III Chapter VI

Istanbul, the Magic Love City

A love story in Istanbul When it comes to Istanbul, I used to have this imagination.

It was eerily early in the morning, just about the time when the first ray of morning sunshine cracked the dawn. Dressed in a light buttoned dirty green shirt and in a pair of Prussian blue jeans, I departed from hotel and headed towards the giant square between the Blue Mosque and the Grand Bazaar.

Standing in a crowded but far from sardined bright red tram in Istanbul city centre, the so called historic tram that has for years enjoyed the leading role among Istanbul postcards, my mind has already been drifted to the giant square. The excitement of snapping gorgeous national geographic standard photos had already caused an unrecognised adrenaline rush within my body.

Sunset IstanbulI paid no attention to any commuter. I was fully immersed in my own thought.

“Next station, Sultanahmet,” the identical voice of the sexy station calling lady conveyed through the speaker. Sultanahmet, or Blue Mosque, or my destination.

I breathed in the morning freshness. The blend between the apple tea fragrance and the breeziness of ocean injected an unfamiliar sense of ecstasy in me. However, before the wilderness got out of my control, I was tamed by the reverberation of morning prayer delivered from the Blue Mosque.

It was just the way I love about Istanbul, the fight between the buzz, the calmness, the nature, and the artificial to concur the emotion of every human being in the city. It was magical.

Historic Tram IstanbulFollowing the ray of sunlight, I started my main task in the morning, the capture of the prettiest portray of Istanbul. The minarets and decorative façade of Blue Mosque, the emptiness of the giant square and the crowds of pigeons scattering around the square, and the golden lights penetrated through the narrow entry of the Grand Bazaar. The camera had never been so joyous before. Every facet of Istanbul Old City looked absolutely fascinating, from the camera or through the window of my eyes.

Sitting on a bench scrutinising the pictures via the camera screen while blanketing my body with the morning sunshine, something caught my attention. I raised my head with a target in my mind instantaneously. Shouldn’t be too far away. It was seconds before I realised the presence of this gorgeous fella that looked right into my camera with an absolutely seducing smile.

Colourful Istanbul But there was no one. I rose and quickly paced myself to where the fella was standing. My eyes scouted around with no success. Feeling disappointed, I stared at the screen, or more precisely the fella in the screen once more. That’s it?

“First time in Istanbul?” an unfamiliar voice carrying the Turkish accent delivered from my back. I turned around and there was the fella. The thrill of “lost and found” dominated my entire soul. I made a silly smile but remained speechless. The other end, which by now handling an apple tea to me, was nothing but confused.

Unknowing the reason, this imagination casted in my mind since the first time I learnt about Istanbul from television. And thereafter, I told myself, it is where the love of my life will come. Istanbul, it has made quite an impression even before my arrival. Did I experience what I had imagined? You know the answer, join me next time.