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Reflections from Turkey


Trypto-Dan (not to be confused with tryptophan), Dan Matz

By Daniel Matz '14 on March 10, 2013

It was a long day here with the Interfaith Group. We started the day on the airplane, ten long hours flying over the Atlantic Ocean, and then the entire European continent. Our landing went smoothly, leaving the airport less so. We met up with our tour guide Isaiah, and our guide for the next two days, Volkan. Unfortunately, though, one of our members had his luggage lost, and the process for filing a report form took longer than expected.

Eventually, we left the airport in the company of Volkan and Isaiah, and proceeded to tour around parts of the outskirts of Istanbul. We visited the Kariye Museum, a Byzantine-era church that overlooked the majority of the old city, a breathtaking view that has inspired pilgrimages and visitations for centuries. The mosaics and frescos that line the walls and ceilings were simply amazing to behold. We at lunch at a little cafe right behind the church, then moved on to the beautiful Eyup Mosque near the water, arriving just as prayer began. The combination of awe-inspiring architecture and witnessing the beauty of prayer made it a highlight of the trip.

We ate dinner at an outdoor restaurant near our hotel, which served trays of meat and vegetables, served around flaming center pieces. We then spent the evening exploring the city in small groups, window shopping and sightseeing around the area of the city where we were staying. In all, this was a long, interesting and funny day that set the stage well for the week to come.


  • Dan Matz said:

    Thanks for the comment, and sorry I only now saw it. It’s been a great and safe trip so far, and we’re looking to continue that way through our last day

  • Marcy Mouzaffar said:

    Love hearing of the great adventures that you all are experiencing so far on your trip to Turkey. I pray that you enjoy your time there as I am sure you will never forget it. Getting to visit another culture is so exciting and it really makes you appreciate others and what their life is about. Enjoy your time together and be safe.

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