Too tired to write much. We arrived in Istanbul last night.
Turkish Airlines is no more comfortable nor is its food an ounce or a spice better than American airlines. But Carol and I made it through the 11 hour flight. Then we endured a long line to get our Turkish Visa. We paid $20, they checked our passport and stamped it approved. Then another line for the passport check. A quick glance at it and we were out. Finally we could grab a taxi and head toward the hotel, the Doubletree-Hilton Inn the Old Town, getting our first view of Istanbul, the historical Constantinople.
First impressions. A fascinating combination of the old and new. A city undergoing massive construction. New malls and shopping centers going up. Minarets and towers of an ancient country rising above it all.
We met the other two coming in to Istanbul, had a drink at a bar, dinner at one of the little cafes the size and environment of a hot dog stand, but excellent fried (more like sauteed) egglant, eggplant pizza (actually in what appeared like a small panini), and a type of rice custard, and then back to the hotel to fall into bed.
Monday we have a full day tour of the city. I will try to blog about it on Tuesday.
Filed under: Istanbul