We arrived in Istanbul, Turkey about 1pm today so the day started out pretty lazy which was good because I stayed up way to late last night. After going to the show in the Stardust Theater, then watching one movie with Brandi, I watched a second one on my own and then read for an hour, it was after 2am when I finally fell asleep.
Once we finally arrived my dad, mom, Brandi, Alex and I took off to explore near the marina. We have a big excursion tomorrow to the Grand Bazaar and the Blue Mosque so we just decided to walk around today. In most of the ports we’ve been in right outside the terminal is a nice shopping district, here in Istanbul not so much. Before we left the terminal we had to pass through two security checkpoints where they validated our cruise cards. My mom couldn’t pass through the second set of turnstiles so she had to go back to the ship and get a new card. She was able to catch up with us later, however we were on our way back.
Once outside of the terminal we turned left and quickly realized there was really nothing that direction and found ourselves walking down what was similar to Hwy 99. We walked a little further and finally turned back.
After we made it back to the terminal we went the other direction and came across a park. This was better than our Hwy 99 walking, but there still was nothing open or anything to really look at. We took a couple of photos and continued on.
A little bit farther down the park two little girls approached us asking for money; this really broke my heart. They wouldn’t leave my dad alone and kept asking. It wasn’t long before my dad took out off running with the girls right behind him, and they started playing tag. It was hilarious. My dad would sprint forward, the girls would follow and then he’d reverse and run the other direction. They did this for a few minutes and definitely was the highlight of today’s outing!
After our walk in the park, or in my dad’s case his run through the park we headed back to the ship. Along the way we passed a man selling pretzels and my dad wanted to buy one. The pretzel was 1 Turkish Lira, but all my dad had was Euros. He tried to pay 2 Euro’s, which was twice the amount it was but the guy still said ‘no’. Sorry dad, no pretzel for you today.
Tonight we stay all night in Istanbul. I was wrong (shocking I know), but we stay docked all night and thus, all the stores on board, plus the casino are closed until we leave tomorrow night. With nothing much going on, on board, our family got out the cards and anti’ed up 2 Euros each and started a Gin tournament. The first round competitors consisted of my dad and me, Kelly and Brandi and Alex and my mom, Grandma had the bye.
I lost badly to my dad and was out of the tournament pretty quickly. The other games went quite a bit longer, but in the end Kelly and my mom were victorious. My dad and Grandma started round 2, but the other games will continue tomorrow.
Tomorrow we have to check-in for our tour in the Star Bar at 8:15am, ick that’s really early.