Tag Archives: People watching

Beyoğlu’s resilience.

I’ve since long harboured the dream of having – or, more modestly, staying at – a house on the Bosporus. Something with balconies abutting the waterfront, or perhaps a terrace with a view of the passing ships, a bottle of … Continue reading

Posted in Europe, Turkey | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Faces of Ortaköy.

Today’s a popular day to be in Ortaköy. Day-trippers are flocking to the waterfront. Outnumbered, the locals have made a hasty retreat to the fishmonger’s. Better let the tide ebb away. Only one thing is for sure: tomorrow, they’ll all … Continue reading

Posted in Europe, Turkey | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Vapur abstraction.

There’s a concept I sometimes hear from my software engineer chums: abstraction, or the process of removing all sorts of attributes – be them physical, spatial, temporal – to get to the root of something (usually a system, since we’re … Continue reading

Posted in Europe, Turkey | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Porteño portrait.

There’s only a way to define my desire to describe a community of 13 million people after visiting it for a mere handful of days: preposterous. Still, this is what I’ll attempt here. This is my final tribute to Buenos … Continue reading

Posted in Americas, Argentina | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

On the market.

Non è da signori. This was a veritable leitmotiv of my youth. It’s a phrase hard to render properly into English, non è da signori. I doubt is very much in use these days; from my point of view, I … Continue reading

Posted in Americas, Argentina | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

A fire in Balvanera and other stories: a brief glimpse into Buenos Aires.

Something is burning on Avenida Rivadavia. White smoke is rising in thick plumes from a shop on the south side of the road, cutting the perspective like a curtain hanging from the trees. Flames fan out intermittently and passers-by scatter, … Continue reading

Posted in Americas, Argentina | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Six Photos in Search of a Story.

A picture is worth a thousand words, they say. Never let photos in the way of a good story, I say. Ask anyone who’d read Thubron or Robb, writers of books without as much as a picture, and ask them … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, South Korea | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 33 Comments

Beirut people watching.

Humanity is the best spectacle, in this city where gated communities rub shoulders with bombed-out, charred shells. Pneumatically-enhanced bimbos and babes driving Dodge Camaros on one end of the spectrum and ragged Syrian children tapping on their rolled-up windows for … Continue reading

Posted in Lebanon, Middle East | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

The whistling man of Registan.

Denying it would be pointless, and I won’t: I am an unabashed Morricone fan and – the two go hand in hand, really – an Alessandroni devotee. Whilst I appreciate that Morricone’s fame is somehow a given, I’m aware that … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, Central Asia, Uzbekistan | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Singapore in technicolour.

Expat life. If there is such a thing, my half-a-week in Singapore, was precisely that. No sybaritic luxury and champagne breakfast; rather, restaurants on the East shore park, coconuts, cab rides even to do one kilometre and the shuffle heat-aircon-heat-aircon-pool … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, Singapore | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments