Sunday, June 05, 2011
Roadside food in Istanbul as we trekked along the tramline. Turkey's famous for the coffee, hibiscus tea, gelatine icecreams that don't melt and of course their version of kebab/shaurmas, baklavas and a variety of mouth watering nut-filled sweets... but roadside food always excites me more for some reason :)
Reconstruction at the Hagia Sophia Museum, and below is the God of the Rivers, Poseidon. the fact that these sculptures and archaelogical restorations happen on an everyday basis and the painstaking way in which it is done inspired awe in us, a bunch of twenty something impatients ;)
The Cisterna Basilica has the capacity to store 100,000 tons of water but holds only a few feet of water lining the bottom today. The cistern is surrounded by a firebrick wall with a thickness of 4 metres (13 ft) and coated with a waterproofing mortar. The ceiling is supported by a forest of 336 marble columns. Located in the northwest corner of the cistern, the bases of two columns reuse blocks carved with the visage of Medusa. Tradition has it that the blocks are oriented sideways and inverted in order to negate the power of the Gorgons' gaze, however it is widely thought that they were placed sideways and upside down only to be the proper size to support their columns. (excerpt from wikipedia)
Me with my love for folklore, I'm swayed in the direction of the Gorgon story, though rationally thinking, physics would be a more important factor when considering the force of holding up the ceiling and pure pressure from the mass amount of water that used to be contained here.
My earlier post covered the more popular tourist destinations, these are just the knick knacks that slip in between but I want to remember 20 years down the road from now. This post is severely delayed I know, but I finally got the time to do it today, so here it is.. :)