Ege Soley, People's Istanbul
Ege Soley, People's Istanbul People’s Istanbul - Interviews Ege Soley 1. Can you tell about the first memories you have in Istanbul? Were you born in here or came after?

I was born in Istanbul, Bebek, then we moved to Istinye when I was a kid. I spent my childhood in a beautiful old house by the sea (where my family still lives) and spent my days and nights always out, playing basketball, football or whatever boys on the street were playing. Being a way too energetic boyish girl, I ended up in Darüşşafaka, playing basketball for 6 years. 6 great years!

2. Share your best suggestions on where to go to a dinner especially for the Turkish tastes?

Of course, Yeni Lokanta; always difficult to reserve a place, but once you get there you’re amazed by the delicious food. Çukurcuma’da Bahar, a new rakı & meze place, with a beautiful garden and delicious fish, worth trying. Giritli for its wide range of mezes and cozy atmosphere. If you’re around Grand Bazaar definetely Havuzlu Restaurant inside the Bazaar or Aslan Restaurant just around the corner, in Nuruosmaniye.
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3. What's your favorite way to spend a rainy day in Istanbul?

I love rain and I never mind walking in the rain. A walk from istinye to tarabya would definetly cheer me up. Otherwise, staying home with a good movie is a always a good chice.

4. What about the day you can’t forget in Istanbul?

31st of may 2013, the day Gezi protests started, or let’s say it spread across the city. First time I smelled pepper gas, rinsed out my eyes with milk, ran from police and felt myself alive for the first time. Nothing stayed the same after that night, we all changed. I lived in a park for a month, with hundreds of people that I didn’t know but never felt unsafe. As Dickens said, “ it was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”

5. Tell us about your secret places or just one hidden gem in Istanbul?

Maybe not a very secret place, but Şimdi is my all time favourite ‘run away from city’ spot. Good food, good drinks, always calm, always welcoming.

6. The music. What can you tell about the places you go to listen quality music as your choices?

Of course Nardis, where you can listen to good local jazz bands. Then Nublu, a newer spot, again for jazz lovers. Indigo and babylon always have something good to offer you and Wake up call is a new and cool place for electronic music and DJ performances. And least but not least, a good Classical music concert in Aya Irini’s magical atmosphere, is always a good idea.

7. How would you spend an ideal Sunday in Istanbul? Just to stay at home or you like to step outside?

I live in Moda, an old residential district on the Asian side, by the sea. If I don’t have any appointments or anything to do somewhere else I prefer not leaving Moda. I go to Yoğurtçu Parkı, sit on grass, meditate and read all day. I always loved parks and its one of the rare places that remind me of years I spent in Paris.

8. What’s the most funny experience you had in public?

I wouldn’t belive it if someone else had told me this but it happened to me: while eating in Sunset with an american friend, she asked me what the otherside of the bosphorus was, and I told her it was the asian side. She thought for a second and told me: “oh so we should definetely go there too and eat some sushi!”

9. Is there any chance to avoid the noise of this city without going out of it?

Any silence places to hide? Everytime I go to İstiklal Street (which is almost once a week) I go to Sant’Antonio church, sit there quietly for a while, think and pray. I don’t know why but I love this church, I love how it takes me away from ıstıklal street’s chaos and calms me down dor a while. It’s been my routine since my high school years.

10. After all, what can you tell about this city to a complete stranger?

Expect the unexpected.
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