Sunday, 23 September 2007
Istanbul....Here I come!!!!!
Ok, so I get around a bit....
Next weekend I am going to visit some friends in Cheshire (about 200 miles/320 km from where I live).
After visiting my friends, I will be returning to my home town of Swindon to the UK Honda Plant where I am Resource Planning Manager, to be picked up by taxi and taken to Heathrow Airport to fly out to Istanbul in Turkey for a week.
Now, before you all start shouting at me for being on one big holiday, I just wanted to say that this time it is a business trip.
Istanbul has a unique position in the World by being the only city settled on two different continents and thereby offering a chance to make an intercontinental trip by bus or ferry like some of the Istanbullers do everyday.Today, Istanbul still remains the commercial, historical and cultural centre of Turkey, and its beauty lies in its ability to embrace its contradictions. Ancient and modern, religious and secular, Asia and Europe, mystical and earthly all co-exist here.
Geographically Istanbul is divided into three by water. The European and Asian parts are dissected by the Bosphorus.
The European section is further divided into two, as the Old and the New cities, by the Golden Horn. The concepts of old and new are relative only. As the New City was largely reshaped in the Republican Period, it still carries the main urban characteristics of Byzantium. The skyline of Istanbul is shaped by the domes and minarets of over 400 mosques concentrated mostly in the 'Old City' or 'Historical Peninsula' on one hand, and by skyscapers of the 'New City' on the other.
I will be staying in Taksim Square on the European side of Istanbul, but each day will be travelling over the Bosphorus river to the Asian side to visit the Honda Car Plant. My accommodation for the week is the stunning Ceylan Intercontinental Hotel:
I have already had the fortune to have stayed at this hotel on five different occasions this year, and am beginning to get to know the place quite well. I wish I could say the same for Istanbul or even Taksim Square, but as I get picked up from my hotel each morning and 7.30am and do not arrive back until late in the evening - I haven't really had the opportunity to enjoy the sights and sounds.
Nevertheless, I will be sure to take my camera with me and snap away (even if it is from my hotel room window...lol!!). As I am working, I will have to take my laptop with me, so will no doubt keep a post updated each evening.
Anywayz, I won't keep rambling away any longer, as I still have my Corfu holiday post to write. I am going to have to cut down on my travels for a while... I'm starting to fall behind.
....it's a hard life, eh?
Cheerio for now, G :)