Thursday, July 09, 2009

The Real Istanbullus

My photos today are sadly Freud-less, only because it was too crowded and busy in the Bazaar, I was afraid I'd lose him, and I felt kind of weird taking him in to a functioning mosque.

Anyway, Istanbul is full of cats, and most of them are born in the spring and summer, so that means kittens of varying sizes everywhere in early July. Kittens that come and beg at your dinner table when you dine at a fancy al fresco restaurant, kittens that jump in front of you on the sidewalk in the dark and make you squeal, and kittens sleeping anywhere food is discarded and it's warm and sunny. Istanbul residents (Istanbullus) seem to like the cats, and I've also seen several headscarfed women happily feeding and cooing to them. In the First Courtyard of Topkapı palace, I noticed a number of kittens large and small, and two rather indulgent fathers letting their toddling sons pet and talk to them. It turns out that cats are sacred to Islam. A story goes that Mohammed cut off his sleeve, rather than wake the cat that was sleeping on his arm.

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