Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Istanbul: A Mosque On Every Corner

No disrespect meant, but finding a place to worship in Turkey is like locating the nearest Starbucks in the States: There's practically a mosque on every corner. In Istanbul, the two most famous such structures stand grand in the Sultanahmet district, where we were staying. There's Blue Mosque, flanked within eye view of the equally regal and historic Sultanahmet Mosque.

Two questions. 1) Palm trees. Huh? Turkey has the same latitude as New York, and I don't remember seeing a lot of tropical foliage here in Brooklyn. 2) Does anybody really believe that the several-times-a-day prayers that burst from loudspeakers all across the city (the country, in fact), are actually instilling religious reverence? I mean, it might help to find some leaders who can actually carry an Arabic tune. Oops, was that disrespectful?