The Overlords of Istanbul

I have noticed long ago (thanks, WordPress Stats) that a disturbing amount of people gets referred to my blog by search engines (presumably Google). Well this would not be a disturbing thing if the keywords they were searching for weren’t ’Somali girls fucking’, ‘Burmese girl big ass’ or ‘where to find sex in Nairobi’. I was…

Istiklal Avenue: the Digestive Tract of Istanbul

Cheesy guidebooks will call Istiklal Caddesi and Taksim ‘the heart of Istanbul’s nightlife’. I would rather compare it to a digestive tract. The more you come to Istanbul, the more thoroughly you get fermented and digested by Taksim’s juicy smells of roasted chestnuts and boiled mussels – the ultimate star-rated delicacy for alcohol-induced and unable…

Wanna see my bouncy castle?

^^ This pickup phrase is almost as cool as my own (which I, in turn, borrowed from Zaphod Beeblebrox himself, along with his underwear). Except, I might actually never find my spaceship, while Thomas definitely can show you his bouncy castle. Meet Thomas who calls himself the Bouncy Castle Ambassador. ‘My mission is to bring…

Notes from a Big Island – Istanbul, Büyükada

This might become the best memory you’ll bring home from Istanbul. Not the missile-looking minarets of the Blue mosque, not the old rocks of Topkapi Palace, not the crazy nights till dawn along the drunk-packed alleyways of Istiklal street, not even that 100th kebab or mussel consumed there at 5am to fight the munchies. The…

The gender of your city, or an ode to Istanbul

‘Essentially the great question remains: Who will hold Constantinople?’ Napoleon Some languages express it quite transparently: Moscow (Moskva) is essentially a female city and Saint-Petersburg is a real 18th century gentleman. Russian language distinguishes between grammatical genders, so we can have feminine and masculine cities on the geographical map of Russia… as well as some odd neutral…