Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Istanbul-The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

At the Blue Mosque

A view of the Basilica Cistern
Inside the Hagia Sophia.  You can just barely see a cat on the left side of the picture in front of the spotlight.  There were cats everywhere in Istanbul!!

A view of the Blue Mosque

Playing "Peek-a-Boo"at the Blue Mosque

All ready for Chirstmas church!
There is way too much to write about when it comes to our trip, so I divided my thoughts in to 3 catergories:

The Good:
1.  Our traveling partners.  The Yerrington and Kitsteiner families were so much fun.  All our kids are around the same age and we have very similar parenting styles.  When Angelica and Wendi are around, I truly feel like W has 3 moms watching him.  These friends have become our family here, and I was so glad to be with them on the trip.

2.  The aforementioned Krispy Kreme discovery.  No explanation needed.

3.  The beauty of an ancient city.  The Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, and the old city walls date back to around the 9th century.  Amazing to see.

4.  A relaxing morning cruise on the Bosphorus-we had the area below the deck pretty much to ourselves.  It was lovely.  Dan was an excellent trip planner.

5.  Christmas morning Mass in a predominantly Muslim city.  It was so cool to gather with fellow Christians to celebrate Jesus' birth.  Afterwords, we heard a Christian musical group playing praise music in the streets.  What a blessing.

The Bad:
1.  Pushing strollers on cobblestone through winding old streets-some with severe inclines.  Hard work.

2.  Tired kids melting down.  Not their fault, but stressful nonetheless.

The Ugly:
1.  Getting ripped off by a cab driver.  He took is for about 80 dollars.  Long story-but it made us (especially Ryan) really angry.  I guess that's big city livin' for ya.

We are glad to be home, but grateful for the opportunity to explore such a historical and unique place.  Where will our next adventure take us??

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