The sun is shining in Istanbul and it has been having a large effect on not only my mood, but the people and activities around the city. Now that the weather is getting nice, every space seems to be turning into a public space and fences don’t seem to actually act as boundaries. I see people hanging out in fenced in green space, and people lounging on hills that I didn’t know were inhabitable. A couple days ago in Üküdar I saw a group of boys jumping of a ferry loading dock into the Bosphorus; how they got around the fence, I have no idea.
In the beginning of the semester walking to class through Taks
im it was busy, very busy. But I walked past the park every day almost un-knowingly. Now as I walk by it’s impossible to ignore the large crowds of people gathering in and around the park. The population of Istanbul seems to have doubled with the number of people hanging around! Even at night, all the streets are still filled and it would be weird if I had a street to myself. Not only are there visibly much more Istanbulians hanging around, but I can tell more and more tourists are around. Also now between the time I’ve spent here and the warm weather, tourists have become much more obvious as tourists as far as what they are doing and how they are dressed.
Today at the durum shop I go to almost every day for lunch there was a line and all the seats in the shop were full! I told Mustafa, the durum man, that he was busy today, and he laughed and simply replied that tourist season was beginning.
People-watching being a favorite past time of mine has become increasingly more entertaining as the weather has gotten nicer, and I have been loving watching people and how they seem to spill into every nook and cranny of the city. Just like everyone else, I have also been trying to enjoy the nice weather! I’m going for week two with no pants (just skirts, dresses and genie pants), and it’s been phenomenal. You can also find me sitting on my laptop in various parks as I try to soak in the sun and be productive at the same time (it’s the crunch time part of the semester, so we are always multi-tasking). Between these outdoor work sessions and our spring break in Cappadoccia, my sketching arm has become significantly more tan than my other arm- but it’s been worth it!
I can’t wait to see how many more people will continue to fill all spaces of Istanbul as the weather continues to grow nicer. It’s interesting to see how people choose to occupy space and how that changes dependent on so many other factors.