Hanging out in Istanbul

We are taking a week’s holiday and we chose Turkey. We arrived in Istanbul yesterday. Amazing, wonderful, historical city. The people are REALLY REALLY friendly and I totally recommend all my friends to come to this country to visit and enjoy. Last night I went out with my son, Sam, who is with us for a few more days before leaving us to study filmmaking in Wellington.

Watch out, Peter Jackson!


A few days ago, Turkey announced that they are handing back to the non-Muslim minorities a billion dollars worth of buildings that were confiscated since 1936. The Christians will also be allowed to reopen their Seminary that was closed in 1985. FANTASTIC! This is a great move and one that will no doubt speed their journey into joining the EU.

I hope the churches, who have 12 months to reclaim these buildings, schools, cemeteries, etc, will use them wisely. I bet other countries will offer to help them think through what could be done to repurpose some of those buildings for ministry in the 21st century. I know I have some ideas . . . .

The Hagia Sofia, of course, will remain a musuem. It was taken a long time ago and thats all water under the bridge. Bummer!

Istanbul hagia sophia


Andrew Jones launched his first internet space in 1997 and has been teaching on related issues for the past 20 years. He travels all the time but lives between Wellington, San Francisco and a hobbit home in Prague.


  • Marion Altena says:

    As a Turkish interpreter and Istanbul-freak I’m very jealous now 😉
    And as long as you’re there, PLEASE make sure to visit the most extraordinary terrace in town:
    It’s the perfect place to meet with some friends and have a coffee.
    Greetz, bless bless,
    Marion Altena.
    P.S.: Do you know David Cathey?

  • I’d love to visit Turkey. Some day! Good to know the people are friendly. Do you think they would be friendly to women as much as men?

  • Andrew says:

    Friendly friendly friendly. And friendlier in a nicer way than Morocco which we visited last year. The men in Turkey are nice to women as far as i can tell, esp. compared to other nations. they can be a little chauvinistic but they will probably not slap your bottom when you walk past like they might in other countries.
    It helps to cover up as much as possible.

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