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Updated: Mar 26, 2023

Hagia Sophia from the Bosporus Strait.

I had a birthday yesterday. Getting older every year. I got the cutest card from the cutest 5-year-old: "Another year in the bag."

Another year, indeed.

I remember being five and being ready to turn sixteen. Thirty or forty or fifty seemed incomprehensible.

It is amazing, then, to think how long ago some of the places I visited in Eastern Europe were created. Lifetimes upon lifetimes ago, and yet not so long ago in the history of the world. (Thirty or forty or fifty years is, after all, only a drop in the ocean of time.)

It is interesting, too, to think how small we all are in the grand scheme of things. Small and yet not insignificant. What would Hagia Sophia be like today if not for Mehmed the Great? What would Whoville be without Cindy Lou? (A much less cute place, anyway.)

And though we may be just one person to the world, to one person, we may be the whole world.

Perspective is everything.

Hagia Sophia zoomed in from Galata Tower. (A post on Galata Tower is coming soon.)

Hagia Sophia (near the center of the image, across the bridge) in Istanbul's old city.

Hagia Sophia on a rainy day.

Hagia Sophia in the morning light.

Hagia Sophia and a wash house (see below) in the morning light.

The wash house and the external walls of Topkapi Palace looking towards the sea.

This wash house was a gift to one of the sultans.


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Happy birthday, Jessica. I hope you had a wonderful day and I hope you had cake 🎂

Your photos and videos certainly do give the reader an excellent perspective.

Jessica Cyphers
Jessica Cyphers
Mar 06, 2023
Replying to

Thank you so much, Gary! I didn't have cake, but I did get my nails done with my favorite 5-year-old. I'm glad you liked the images and video! :)

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