Books Worth a Look

  • Little Bee by Chris Cleave - This book is a must read. Better than anything else I've read, it takes you vividly into the life of a person in the 3rd world who has no choice but to escape. It is brilliantly written & works well as an audio book. Often I've sent info about the wonderful refugees I've met in Europe. We know only so much of their plight as it is painful for them to recall much less live through again by recounting it. But over time it is clear what they've lived through. This book is excellent as you discover the horrors of their world. Somewhat how to me, it is like being in Europe near a Concentration Camp. One has an obligation to visit it. 'Never to Forget.' In this case, to have our eyes opened.
  • Garbage King by Eliz Laird - The book is set on the streets on Addis Ababa, in Ethiopia and here lives Mamo and his sister Tiggist. When Mamo's "uncle" offers a job, he soon sets out on a bus to work. Little does he know that he is actually being sold into slavery...

Sunday, October 27, 2013

TURKEY: Istanbul

Traveling to Istanbul has always seemed like a dream to fulfill. What I did not realize was just how amazing Turkey is. The big draws in Istanbul are the Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace, the Grand Market and Spice Market. The Grand Market is closed on Sunday and our excellent Turkish guide (American-European Travel) told us that it's full of junk and not worth the time. The Spice Market is manageable and nice finds can be found. YOU MUST negotiate. Start with 50% of what they ask. Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque are incredible sites outside. Hagia Sophia is the largest church in the medieval world. The Blue Mosque is known for its fine Byzantine mosaics and Islamic calligraphy. Due to lots of renovations in both places(and many wires holing chandelier type lights in the Blue Mosque) much is blocked or hard to see. Topakai Palace - a series of three courtyards is lovely to walk through. There are a few inner rooms holding artifacts - including Mohammed's footprint. For a Westerner it takes some getting used to to seeing so many Mosques and few churches. Turley is 99% Muslim. One cannot miss the call to prayer as minarets have loudspeakers on them.

No comments:


Thoughts on the amazing people I get to meet.

Rich, my 19 year old friend, soon to be Franciscan and recent community member at Haley House in Boston. An article he wrote.