Turkey - The People We Met - Thomas Lemke

The People We Met - Here's Looking at You

  • This is a selection of photos of the folks we've run into. They have enriched our lives. I hope we've amused them a little too.

  • Taking Care of Hikers

    This man sold tea to hikers from a set of huts back on a trail in the Pigeon Valley near Goreme. While we were drinking he said he'd give us a prize if we could answer two questions: 1) Can you say two things in Turkish? 2) Can you name two countries that border Turkey? We got the prize, an evil eye that now protects my camera bag.

  • "I Will Build a Hotel Here"

    This man told us about his dream to build a hotel in a Cappadocia. His great grandfather made his home in this cave so he will make it the reception lobby for his hotel.

  • Dare

    This girl and her sister were getting some early planting done in containers. She seemed to say, "You better not take my picture." I always take the picture. We both laughed.

  • Waiting Out The Storm

    I weathered a pelting rainstorm to get photos one afternoon. This guy waited too. He didn't have a camera. He just wanted to see the sunset.

  • Photographer

    We are an odd lot that gets up before sunrise to go looking for pictures. I have never regretted getting out of bed; there are always rewards.

  • Restaurant Owner

    This lady sold me some Turkish coffee on a cold morning after I had descended the hills of Cappadocia on a photo safari. We ran into her often in the days that followed and she always called me over to say hi and ask how I was. I recommend her restaurant, Cappadocian Cuisine, in Goreme.

  • Hawker

    Facing rejection a thousand times a day the indefatigable hawkers are on the street selling rugs, food, whatever. Always smiling.

  • Colors

    Nice color match between the watermelons and her scarf.

  • Cultures Meet

    Young Europeans sample some olives from a seller at the Fethiye market.

  • Ugly

    A guy came up to me while I was photographing this fish seller and said, "Please crop out the man and keep the fish in your photo. The fish is better looking."

  • Market Lady

    We bought dates and dried fruit from her.

  • The Fixer

    Dr. Can from the Caretta Apart Hotel in Fethiye is as close to a personal fixer as I may ever get to know. When Rick Steves or Anthony Bourdain visit a country they have someone to "fix" transportation, tours, personal experiences, restaurants etc. Dr. Can (pronounced John) worked with us every morning to be sure our stay at his hotel and our visits to the surrounding region were personally perfect. He is the best.

  • My First Shave

    Using a straight razor this Fethiye barber gave me a very close shave. Twice. Then lit an alcohol dipped Q-Tip on fire and singed the little hairs of my cheeks and ears.

  • Night Fishing

    Men fishing off a busy bridge in Istanbul. They catch very small fish.

  • Tagged

    Many of my best friends are dogs. Here they get an ear tag if they've had their rabies shot. Even the street dogs had tags.

  • What Are You Rebelling About? ...What Have You Got

    We were told that these folks not happy about the current state of affairs in the Islamic world. They especially wanted to form a separate Islamic state made up of all the Islamic countries. The "530" on this woman's palm refers to the Egyptian Revolution. Also interesting, the women march separately behind the men.

  • Labor

    Much moving of goods in Istanbul is done by foot. Either it is less expensive or more practical or both. Traffic in downtown Istanbul is intense so it may just be faster this way.

  • Travelers

    Travelers are everywhere. There are mobs of them in Istanbul from all corners of the globe. They pile into tour buses and public transportation. They wear the same wrinkled clothes for days at a time. They can be aggravating at times but they have an intense curiosity about the world and a zest for life that I admire.

So, "Crossing Uneven Ground". Pretty obviously, it's a style of travel that has found me tripping over cobblestones in Belgium and climbing the crags of Cappadocia. It is also the recognition that crossing cultures and connecting with people is also tricky turf to tread. But in my mind nothing is so rewarding as discovering new landscapes or learning about how other people live. Well there it is then, the "Uneven Ground"...metaphor for adventurous living; the "Crossing"...well let's do that together.
Powered by SmugMug Log In