11 April, 2010

İstanbul, day 3: Bebek - context

This image struck me the moment i saw the bride and groom walk from their limousine towards the water - and spotted the punk sitting a few benches away. It's all about context. Looking at the wedding pictures, you will see only the smiling couple, and all the vital details of the place, to borrow a phrase from Wendell Berry, will be reduced to scenery. But the place (as you, and the punk in the foreground, can see) is rich with details, including the Rumeli Hisari, Ottoman fortifications built in 1451.

Bebek hosts the second Bosphorus bridge, and offers trendy cafes and restaurants. (Pricey, i might add. When i stopped on the return trip for dinner, an admittedly good hamburger and fries cost eighteen lira.) Young people fill a waffle-shop and spill out onto the sidewalk. Here there is a promenade along the strait. Sellers offer medye - stuffed mssels - and others offer chances to pop a bobbing row of balloons with a BB gun. Fishermen are common along the shore, and here and there one of the moored boats has been transformed into a floating restaurant.