All images © Spiral Light Photography
The young man invited us into his stall for tea. It was our last day in Istanbul, and we had decided to make one final trek to the Grand Bazaar for last minute souvenirs. While purchasing a wallet from the young man, he started a conversation and asked where we were from and what our impressions of Istanbul were. It was this conversation that initiated the tea invitation. As we sat on low wooden stools behind the counter, sipping delicious apple tea out of tulip cups, we told him a little about our life in Canada, and how much we had loved our week in this vibrant city. From the people and the food, to the history and the architecture, it had been a truly positive experience. The young man told us about his life. He was originally from a small town in the centre of Turkey. He had come to Istanbul to earn a living for his young wife and new baby. The fact that he was married with a child took us by surprise, as he was only 20 years old. He also told us that under Turkish law, all young men of his age are required to perform compulsory military service for at least one year, and that he would be reporting for duty soon. We chatted a little while longer, but outside the stall, there were more customers to serve and more deals to be made. So we drained our tea cups and wished him well. He wished us a safe trip home and said we must return to Istanbul one day. We promised him that we would.
Here are some images of the colourful items for sale in the Grand Bazaar.