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Istanbul cats



 
 
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  #1  
Old January 3rd 07, 11:50 PM posted to rec.pets.cats.anecdotes
Jack Campin - bogus address
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,122
Default Istanbul cats

Just back from ten days in Istanbul, which is near to being the cat
capital of the planet. I've been visiting Turkey for 25 years. When
I first went, there were many cats in very poor condition: matted fur,
obvious flea infestation, sometimes malnourished. Over the last few
years they've improved enormously. Some random portraits:

- there is a small yard near the top of the Tunel (the nineteenth
century cable-hauled underground railway) which was full of cats
when I first visited, Back then, there was a scruffy second-hand
foreign-language bookshop at the back of the yard, and a population
of about 20 resident cats (and vast numbers of kittens). Now, the
bookshop's gone and there are far less cats. When I first took
Marion there in 1991, we found a small white kitten who loved being
picked up and cuddled. So we looked for her when we were there next,
three years later. She'd turned into a big fat cat who wanted
nothing at all to do with us. Oh well. This time the place was
barricaded off for building work and a big fluffy black one mooched
in and out of the barred gate.

- the fishmarket at the north end of the Galata Bridge is cat heaven.
They have to share the spoils with seagulls but there are always
dozens of cats here. Mostly quite young, there are busy roads all
round and most of them must get run over. A short life but a happy
one.

- just south of the top of the Tunel is the Galata Sufi centre. This
has an extended family of cats guarding the saints' tombs, the
current matriarch being a dark tabby with a big fluffy tail who
wanders between the Sufi centre and the surrounding music shops and
restaurants. She's very friendly, her descendants not as much. In
time they should learn that musicians are just as soft a touch as
Sufis.

- at Anadolu Kavagi, the castle on the Asian side overlooking the
Black Sea, there are a fair number of cats and dogs hanging about,
but the undisputed King of the Castle is a magnificent dark ginger
fluffy tomcat who lords it over his mediaeval ruins. The fluff is
not for decoration, it was near freezing and blowing a stiff wind
when we were there. Down at the quayside, the fish restaurants are
an easy touch for a population of ginger and tabby cats who seem to
spend all day in territorial disputes with the dogs.

- a street trader north of Taksim Square seemed to have left his cat
in charge of a tray of watches. She was an enormous fluffy tabby
and white, like a Norwegian Forest or Maine Coon (not a common kind
of cat in Turkey). You could have trained her to inflict serious
mayhem on anyone who walked off with a watch, but she just liked to
roll over and get her tummy tickled.

- the most stunning place for cats I have ever seen anywhere is the
island of Heybeliada in the Sea of Marmara. This is carless -
there are a few trucks and dozens of horses and carts. The cats
mostly hang out around the quayside since that's where the fish is
(a few fishmongers, people landing fish, very good fish restaurants).
Tabbies, silver tabbies, gingers, calicos, torties, blacks, tuxedo
cats, and some very dark torties in a colour scheme I've never seen
elsewhere. They form something like queues at the fishmongers waiting
for donations (or for the fishmonger to give up for the day and dump
his stock).

I didn't see any cats on the ferries but they must stow away and cross
the Bosphorus all the time to commute intercontinentally between fish
markets in Europe and Asia.

============== j-c ====== @ ====== purr . demon . co . uk ==============
Jack Campin: 11 Third St, Newtongrange EH22 4PU, Scotland | tel 0131 660 4760
http://www.purr.demon.co.uk/jack/ for CD-ROMs and free | fax 0870 0554 975
stuff: Scottish music, food intolerance, & Mac logic fonts | mob 07800 739 557
  #2  
Old January 4th 07, 12:54 AM posted to rec.pets.cats.anecdotes
[email protected]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 3,999
Default Istanbul cats

Jack Campin - bogus address wrote:

Just back from ten days in Istanbul, which is near to being the cat
capital of the planet.


Jack - did you take any PICTURES?? I want to see!!

- just south of the top of the Tunel is the Galata Sufi centre. This
has an extended family of cats guarding the saints' tombs


Sufis have saints?

- the most stunning place for cats I have ever seen anywhere is the
island of Heybeliada in the Sea of Marmara. This is carless -
there are a few trucks and dozens of horses and carts. The cats
mostly hang out around the quayside since that's where the fish is
(a few fishmongers, people landing fish, very good fish restaurants).
Tabbies, silver tabbies, gingers, calicos, torties, blacks, tuxedo
cats, and some very dark torties in a colour scheme I've never seen
elsewhere.


This I would really love to see! I hope you did get some photos while you
were there!

Sounds like a great trip. What's the best time of year to go there? I'd
love to go sometime. A friend of mine went there about 4 years ago and
loved it. (But didn't mention cats.)

Joyce

  #3  
Old January 4th 07, 04:08 AM posted to rec.pets.cats.anecdotes
Gandalf
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 45
Default Istanbul cats

On Wed, 03 Jan 2007 23:50:25 +0000, Jack Campin - bogus address
wrote:

Just back from ten days in Istanbul, which is near to being the cat
capital of the planet. I've been visiting Turkey for 25 years. When
I first went, there were many cats in very poor condition: matted fur,
obvious flea infestation, sometimes malnourished. Over the last few
years they've improved enormously. Some random portraits:

SNIP

Sounds like a very fun trip!

However, seeing so many homeless cats, even if they are relatively
healthy, would make me very, very sad.

They may lead a relatively decent life (enough food, etc.) but you know
they don't have a human to love and spoil them.

And I doubt they get any vet care, so their lives will not be very long
:-(

It sounds like *somebody* may be doing something to control their
numbers. Sadly, I doubt it's trap neuter and release....

Istanbul is, unfortunately, a city in the third world, despite it's
having been the capital of both the Byzantine *and* Ottoman Empires,
IIRC.

Fun fact: Istanbul has had 3 names: the current name, Istanbul.

Before that, it was called Constantinople, after the conquering (sp?)
Emperor Constantine.

Before that, it was called Byzantium. Sorry, I don't know the dates.

~~~~~~~~~~~~
"Life without cats would be only marginally worth living."
-TC, and the unmercifully, relentlessly, sweet calico kitty, Kenzie.

How you behave towards cats here below determines your status in Heaven.
- Robert Heinlein

Life is very difficult. Once you understand that, life becomes easier.
-Buddha

  #4  
Old January 4th 07, 07:40 PM posted to rec.pets.cats.anecdotes
mlbriggs
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,891
Default Istanbul cats

On Wed, 03 Jan 2007 23:50:25 +0000, Jack Campin - bogus address wrote:

Just back from ten days in Istanbul, which is near to being the cat
capital of the planet. I've been visiting Turkey for 25 years. When
I first went, there were many cats in very poor condition: matted fur,
obvious flea infestation, sometimes malnourished. Over the last few
years they've improved enormously. Some random portraits:

- there is a small yard near the top of the Tunel (the nineteenth
century cable-hauled underground railway) which was full of cats
when I first visited, Back then, there was a scruffy second-hand
foreign-language bookshop at the back of the yard, and a population
of about 20 resident cats (and vast numbers of kittens). Now, the
bookshop's gone and there are far less cats. When I first took
Marion there in 1991, we found a small white kitten who loved being
picked up and cuddled. So we looked for her when we were there next,
three years later. She'd turned into a big fat cat who wanted
nothing at all to do with us. Oh well. This time the place was
barricaded off for building work and a big fluffy black one mooched
in and out of the barred gate.

- the fishmarket at the north end of the Galata Bridge is cat heaven.
They have to share the spoils with seagulls but there are always
dozens of cats here. Mostly quite young, there are busy roads all
round and most of them must get run over. A short life but a happy
one.

- just south of the top of the Tunel is the Galata Sufi centre. This
has an extended family of cats guarding the saints' tombs, the
current matriarch being a dark tabby with a big fluffy tail who
wanders between the Sufi centre and the surrounding music shops and
restaurants. She's very friendly, her descendants not as much. In
time they should learn that musicians are just as soft a touch as
Sufis.

- at Anadolu Kavagi, the castle on the Asian side overlooking the
Black Sea, there are a fair number of cats and dogs hanging about,
but the undisputed King of the Castle is a magnificent dark ginger
fluffy tomcat who lords it over his mediaeval ruins. The fluff is
not for decoration, it was near freezing and blowing a stiff wind
when we were there. Down at the quayside, the fish restaurants are
an easy touch for a population of ginger and tabby cats who seem to
spend all day in territorial disputes with the dogs.

- a street trader north of Taksim Square seemed to have left his cat
in charge of a tray of watches. She was an enormous fluffy tabby
and white, like a Norwegian Forest or Maine Coon (not a common kind
of cat in Turkey). You could have trained her to inflict serious
mayhem on anyone who walked off with a watch, but she just liked to
roll over and get her tummy tickled.

- the most stunning place for cats I have ever seen anywhere is the
island of Heybeliada in the Sea of Marmara. This is carless -
there are a few trucks and dozens of horses and carts. The cats
mostly hang out around the quayside since that's where the fish is
(a few fishmongers, people landing fish, very good fish restaurants).
Tabbies, silver tabbies, gingers, calicos, torties, blacks, tuxedo
cats, and some very dark torties in a colour scheme I've never seen
elsewhere. They form something like queues at the fishmongers waiting
for donations (or for the fishmonger to give up for the day and dump
his stock).

I didn't see any cats on the ferries but they must stow away and cross
the Bosphorus all the time to commute intercontinentally between fish
markets in Europe and Asia.

============== j-c ====== @ ====== purr . demon . co . uk ==============
Jack Campin: 11 Third St, Newtongrange EH22 4PU, Scotland | tel 0131 660 4760
http://www.purr.demon.co.uk/jack/ for CD-ROMs and free | fax 0870 0554 975
stuff: Scottish music, food intolerance, & Mac logic fonts | mob 07800 739 557



Very interesting. Thanks for posting. MLB

  #5  
Old January 4th 07, 09:52 PM posted to rec.pets.cats.anecdotes
Jack Campin - bogus address
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,122
Default Istanbul cats

Just back from ten days in Istanbul, which is near to being the cat
capital of the planet.

Jack - did you take any PICTURES?? I want to see!!


Nope. I don't have a digital camera (they just don't work for the
sort of pictures I take, too slow to operate); quality film and
processing is too hard to find in Turkey; and the current climate of
official paranoia means any film I shot could be vandalized by x-ray-
wielding "security" thugs. So I've given up travel photography


- just south of the top of the Tunel is the Galata Sufi centre.
This has an extended family of cats guarding the saints' tombs

Sufis have saints?


That's the usual word Sufis writing in English use. Arabic and
Turkish have words for different categories of them, much like
categorizations you implicitly get in Christianity as well, but
let's keep it simple.


: seeing so many homeless cats, even if they are relatively healthy,
: would make me very, very sad.
: They may lead a relatively decent life (enough food, etc.) but you
: know they don't have a human to love and spoil them.

The ones I was talking about attach themselves to workplaces rather
than houses. Turkish workers can put in very long hours, so they
probably get more human contact than they would left to themselves
all day in a commuter's empty house. There are homecats as well,
of course.


: Istanbul is, unfortunately, a city in the third world

No more so than New York. Its wealthy people are not much less
wealthy than the American rich, and its poor are certainly not as
badly off as America's poorest. No way is a place like Heybeliada
"third world" - by any imaginable standard its quality of life is
far higher than the Scottish village I live in (unless you count
having a car as significant, the zoning laws absolutely ban them).
I'd swap in a minute if I could afford it.

============== j-c ====== @ ====== purr . demon . co . uk ==============
Jack Campin: 11 Third St, Newtongrange EH22 4PU, Scotland | tel 0131 660 4760
http://www.purr.demon.co.uk/jack/ for CD-ROMs and free | fax 0870 0554 975
stuff: Scottish music, food intolerance, & Mac logic fonts | mob 07800 739 557
  #6  
Old January 4th 07, 10:16 PM posted to rec.pets.cats.anecdotes
[email protected]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 3,999
Default Istanbul cats

Jack Campin - bogus address wrote:

Jack - did you take any PICTURES??


Nope. I don't have a digital camera (they just don't work for the
sort of pictures I take, too slow to operate); quality film and
processing is too hard to find in Turkey; and the current climate of
official paranoia means any film I shot could be vandalized by x-ray-
wielding "security" thugs. So I've given up travel photography


That's a shame! What if you mailed rolls of film to your home (or to a
friend's home) in Scotland, and got them developed once you got back?

I'm curious about the slowness of digital cameras. I've noticed that
some people get incredibly exact photos, with no blurring whatsoever,
of moving objects using a digital camera. I've seen photos of hummingbirds
taken on digital cameras, which look like they're frozen in midair, clear
as can be.

I'm not talking about *my* digital camera, by the way, which is cheap
and crappy (it was a "gift" from a vacation real estate company), and at
this point it's broken anyway. But when I took pictures on it, everything
looked blurred! I have always believed that was a problem of a "slow
shutter", and that you can get clearer pictures of moving objects, the
faster your shutter is. But I really know next to nothing about
photography, so perhaps my information is way off-base.

If you feel like expounding on this subject, please feel free - just,
please, keep the techno-jargon to a minimum. Talk to me like a rank
layperson.

Sufis have saints?


That's the usual word Sufis writing in English use.


I didn't know that. Interesting.

: seeing so many homeless cats, even if they are relatively healthy,
: would make me very, very sad.
: They may lead a relatively decent life (enough food, etc.) but you
: know they don't have a human to love and spoil them.


The ones I was talking about attach themselves to workplaces rather
than houses. Turkish workers can put in very long hours, so they
probably get more human contact than they would left to themselves
all day in a commuter's empty house. There are homecats as well,
of course.


Whenever I hear people talk about the tragedy of "homeless ferals", who
have no humans to love them, I'm always a bit skeptical. I know it's
wonderful when someone takes in a cat, takes good care of them, and
showers them with love, but why do all cats *need* a human to love them?
If a cat is feral, then they're not socialized to humans (or they were
at one time, but have "forgotten" it). So why would they need humans to
love them? If they live in a colony, then they have each other. I would
assume that would be enough, in terms of "love".

Getting their material needs met is another matter. In many cases,
there's not enough food for them to catch, and some of them don't know how
to hunt. Domestic cats living on urban streets, with no intervention at
all from people, do have great difficulty surviving. But if a feral colony
is being well fed and cared-for (ie, medical needs), what is missing from
their lives? I think there might be a bit of projection on the part of
people who look at cats in a well-managed feral colony and feel sorry for
them. Perhaps they have really good lives!

: Istanbul is, unfortunately, a city in the third world


No more so than New York. Its wealthy people are not much less
wealthy than the American rich, and its poor are certainly not as
badly off as America's poorest. No way is a place like Heybeliada
"third world" - by any imaginable standard its quality of life is
far higher than the Scottish village I live in (unless you count
having a car as significant, the zoning laws absolutely ban them).
I'd swap in a minute if I could afford it.


Now I *really* want to go!

Joyce
  #7  
Old January 4th 07, 10:56 PM posted to rec.pets.cats.anecdotes
Jack Campin - bogus address
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,122
Default Istanbul cats

Jack - did you take any PICTURES??
Nope. I don't have a digital camera (they just don't work for the
sort of pictures I take, too slow to operate); quality film and
processing is too hard to find in Turkey; and the current climate of
official paranoia means any film I shot could be vandalized by x-ray-
wielding "security" thugs. So I've given up travel photography

That's a shame! What if you mailed rolls of film to your home (or to a
friend's home) in Scotland, and got them developed once you got back?


They can x-ray mailed stuff too, probably with the same machinery used
for checked baggage (i.e. goodbye to any usable image).


I'm curious about the slowness of digital cameras. I've noticed that
some people get incredibly exact photos, with no blurring whatsoever,
of moving objects using a digital camera.


I didn't mean shutter speed, I meant the delay between wanting to
take a picture and getting one. The triggering delay on digital
compacts makes taking fast candid shots, whether of people or cats,
completely impossible, and it takes an eternity of fiddling with
itsy-bitsy buttons to get the sort of control I can get in seconds
with my 1938 Leica or 1960ish Minolta TLR. Very expensive digital
SLRs supposedly get round these problems but I don't have that sort
of money.

============== j-c ====== @ ====== purr . demon . co . uk ==============
Jack Campin: 11 Third St, Newtongrange EH22 4PU, Scotland | tel 0131 660 4760
http://www.purr.demon.co.uk/jack/ for CD-ROMs and free | fax 0870 0554 975
stuff: Scottish music, food intolerance, & Mac logic fonts | mob 07800 739 557
  #8  
Old January 5th 07, 12:07 AM posted to rec.pets.cats.anecdotes
Jo Firey
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,579
Default Istanbul cats


"Jack Campin - bogus address" wrote in message
...
Jack - did you take any PICTURES??
Nope. I don't have a digital camera (they just don't work for the
sort of pictures I take, too slow to operate); quality film and
processing is too hard to find in Turkey; and the current climate of
official paranoia means any film I shot could be vandalized by x-ray-
wielding "security" thugs. So I've given up travel photography

That's a shame! What if you mailed rolls of film to your home (or to a
friend's home) in Scotland, and got them developed once you got back?


They can x-ray mailed stuff too, probably with the same machinery used
for checked baggage (i.e. goodbye to any usable image).


I'm curious about the slowness of digital cameras. I've noticed that
some people get incredibly exact photos, with no blurring whatsoever,
of moving objects using a digital camera.


I didn't mean shutter speed, I meant the delay between wanting to
take a picture and getting one. The triggering delay on digital
compacts makes taking fast candid shots, whether of people or cats,
completely impossible, and it takes an eternity of fiddling with
itsy-bitsy buttons to get the sort of control I can get in seconds
with my 1938 Leica or 1960ish Minolta TLR. Very expensive digital
SLRs supposedly get round these problems but I don't have that sort
of money.


The only consolation for us unskilled photographers is we can take tons of
pictures trying to get that perfect shot. It gives a whole new meaning to
point and shoot. (Especially if you can't see the "viewfinder" in outdoor
light.)

Jo


  #9  
Old January 5th 07, 06:47 AM posted to rec.pets.cats.anecdotes
William Hamblen
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 261
Default Istanbul cats

On 2007-01-04, Gandalf wrote:
On Wed, 03 Jan 2007 23:50:25 +0000, Jack Campin - bogus address
wrote:

Just back from ten days in Istanbul, which is near to being the cat
capital of the planet. I've been visiting Turkey for 25 years. When
I first went, there were many cats in very poor condition: matted fur,
obvious flea infestation, sometimes malnourished. Over the last few
years they've improved enormously. Some random portraits:

SNIP

Sounds like a very fun trip!

However, seeing so many homeless cats, even if they are relatively
healthy, would make me very, very sad.

They may lead a relatively decent life (enough food, etc.) but you know
they don't have a human to love and spoil them.

And I doubt they get any vet care, so their lives will not be very long
:-(

It sounds like *somebody* may be doing something to control their
numbers. Sadly, I doubt it's trap neuter and release....

Istanbul is, unfortunately, a city in the third world, despite it's
having been the capital of both the Byzantine *and* Ottoman Empires,
IIRC.

Fun fact: Istanbul has had 3 names: the current name, Istanbul.

Before that, it was called Constantinople, after the conquering (sp?)
Emperor Constantine.

Before that, it was called Byzantium. Sorry, I don't know the dates.


Somebody has to do it:

Istanbul was Constantinople
Now it's Istanbul, not Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Now it's Turkish delight on a moonlit night

Every gal in Constantinople
Lives in Istanbul, not Constantinople
So if you've a date in Constantinople
She'll be waiting in Istanbul

Even old New York was once New Amsterdam
Why they changed it I can't say
People just liked it better that way

So take me back to Constantinople
No, you can't go back to Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Why did Constantinople get the works
That's nobody's business but the Turks

Istanbul (Istanbul)
Istanbul (Istanbul)

Even old New York was once New Amsterdam
Why they changed it I can't say
People just liked it better that way

Istanbul was Constantinople
Now it's Istanbul, not Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Why did Constantinople get the works
That's nobody's business but the Turks

So take me back to Constantinople
No, you can't go back to Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Why did Constantinople get the works
That's nobody's business but the Turks

Istanbul

  #10  
Old January 5th 07, 03:09 PM posted to rec.pets.cats.anecdotes
Kreisleriana
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,794
Default Istanbul cats

On Fri, 05 Jan 2007 00:47:00 -0600, William Hamblen
yodeled:

On 2007-01-04, Gandalf wrote:
On Wed, 03 Jan 2007 23:50:25 +0000, Jack Campin - bogus address
wrote:

Just back from ten days in Istanbul, which is near to being the cat
capital of the planet. I've been visiting Turkey for 25 years. When
I first went, there were many cats in very poor condition: matted fur,
obvious flea infestation, sometimes malnourished. Over the last few
years they've improved enormously. Some random portraits:

SNIP

Sounds like a very fun trip!

However, seeing so many homeless cats, even if they are relatively
healthy, would make me very, very sad.

They may lead a relatively decent life (enough food, etc.) but you know
they don't have a human to love and spoil them.

And I doubt they get any vet care, so their lives will not be very long
:-(

It sounds like *somebody* may be doing something to control their
numbers. Sadly, I doubt it's trap neuter and release....

Istanbul is, unfortunately, a city in the third world, despite it's
having been the capital of both the Byzantine *and* Ottoman Empires,
IIRC.

Fun fact: Istanbul has had 3 names: the current name, Istanbul.

Before that, it was called Constantinople, after the conquering (sp?)
Emperor Constantine.

Before that, it was called Byzantium. Sorry, I don't know the dates.


Somebody has to do it:

Istanbul was Constantinople
Now it's Istanbul, not Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Now it's Turkish delight on a moonlit night

Every gal in Constantinople
Lives in Istanbul, not Constantinople
So if you've a date in Constantinople
She'll be waiting in Istanbul

Even old New York was once New Amsterdam
Why they changed it I can't say
People just liked it better that way

So take me back to Constantinople
No, you can't go back to Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Why did Constantinople get the works
That's nobody's business but the Turks

Istanbul (Istanbul)
Istanbul (Istanbul)

Even old New York was once New Amsterdam
Why they changed it I can't say
People just liked it better that way

Istanbul was Constantinople
Now it's Istanbul, not Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Why did Constantinople get the works
That's nobody's business but the Turks

So take me back to Constantinople
No, you can't go back to Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Why did Constantinople get the works
That's nobody's business but the Turks

Istanbul



AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAK!!!!!!!!! EARWORM!!!!!!!!

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Make Levees, Not War
 




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