Normally, the ferry would drop you off at an open waterfront plaza, but yesterday it was packed with a political rally. CHP is the opposition party and hoping to win today's local election as a referendum against the policies (including blocking Twitter and YouTube) of the conservative Prime Minister.
Ciya Kebap. This restaurant had a long profile in the New Yorker a few years ago for reviving Turkish home cooking. The article brings up that since the restaurants and street food in Istanbul are almost all run by men, a lot of the home-cooking recipes traditionally made by women are hard to find. Really good meze (appetizer) spread followed by lamb in a pomegranate sauce with eggplant and lamb stuffed artichoke.
A three person band with a clarinet sat down. They started playing what sounded like klezmer-style folk songs to me. All those tired political supporters started clapping, singing, waving flags and crying along with the music. It was a beautiful moment of hope. Watch the video on my Instagram feed.
As we got off the ferry to walk home, I felt overwhelming love for this city with its cats and mosques, fish markets, narrow corridors and cobblestone streets.