Istanbul 3. Notes from a bar at Sultanahmet.

The old dog wandered wondering. What was he hoping for as he dodged across the road, avoiding cars, crazy motorcyclists and trams? Perhaps a tasty snack from the waiters at the Barron Ottoman?

They stroked him.

The kebab man cut, folded, served; ignored the old dog.

He came my way though fish was not on his agenda this evening.

So many old dogs; men clinging to the last vestiges of reality. Retirement, see the world; die.

Just then a woman passed carrying a spare arse; buttock enhancement surgery or too many pies?

The delicious gypsy girls also meandered by, beauty with stealth, ready at any moment to rid me of my wealth.

Rumi came by too, telling tales of life in the Tavern. Whoever brought me here must also take me home. Beer flows but nobody wants to eat. Who is this God?

Where is the Old Dog now?

Drinking in this Tavern, searching for his soul. Julie tells me we should all save our souls; I tell her it is a quote for Fairy Hanny in the next adventure on Uranus.

Nobody laughs.

Somebody’s strict daughter ambles by, completely covered, yet I catch a glimpse of Converse on her feet; appropriate reality, the antithesis of western hatred. Headscarf and Hard Rock Café T-shirt.

Who is this God?

Is it Satan?

The Djinn?

She is caught between a hard rock and a place.

Next to mosey on by, Natalia, wearing a head scarf to avoid tempting men with her beautiful blond locks. Tight jeans displaying succulent rump, Desmond Morris explaining courtship rituals; brassiere manufacturers please note.

Too many converse, contrary, opposition party’s.

East meets West.

Cliché meets cliché.

Back comes the woman with the spare arse, rear projecting shelf of gluteal fat. Perhaps the overflowing buggy explains the growth.

Where now Madam?

Acceptance; men like a bit of flesh to hold onto, they don’t really like the skinny birds.

Or the angry birds.

Condescending Englishman, patronising tourists and locals. I am not a tourist, I am visiting friends.

Denial?

It’s a river in Egypt.

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