Oct 19, 2006
It is important to be here and to feel comfortable walking into a Mosque even as an American Jew in the 6th year of the reign of King George the ( insert expletive here ). It was also refreshing to see in every office the image of a man who stood for literacy, reason and the separation of religeon and state. These people feel like they are being demonized by the US and the Europeans for being Muslims. What a crazy world. If you haven't already, VOTE!
It's been a busy week so far and I am not in fact in Istanbul at the moment. I actually don't know where I am but it seems like I have spent an awful lot of time in transit in a car and ferries. Welcome to the third world traffic jam - what a mess - especially when the rain turns the shoulders to mud and fills up the potholes. Things that have stuck out so far are the old part of Istanbul, fresh pomegranite juice, a building that Al Quaida blew up and moderate muslims. I also have to mention that people are abnormally nice - even when they are not trying to sell you a carpet. Since I am working here I have actually spent most of my time in "real" Turkey i.e. where there are shopping malls (Starbucks, MacDonalds, Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, KFC, Starbucks), shipyards, steel mills and nary a carpet seller, hookah bar or other cliche in sight.