Day 17 (early afternoon)Temperature: 16 degreesWeather: cloudy periods
We made our way towards the Galata Bridge which was crowded with young and old Turkish people alike fishing on both sides of it. They all held long fishing poles over the bridge while patiently waiting for the fish to bite. Seeing them, I asked myself if they were the ones supplying the catch of the day to the Floating Restaurants close by! They could have been!
What made this bridge different from so many other bridges was the fact that it had two levels. The top one where cars drove on or pedestrians walked across while the other level just below it, where restaurants and shops made it pleasant just to sit, relax and enjoy the views of the city. This common market place opened in 2003.
In the past, the Galata Bridge was viewed as a symbolic link where different cultures and different civilizations were bonded together via this bridge. This was why it was the subject of so many Turkish literature, theatre, poetry, novels and even paintings! And here I was today walking on it!
This Galata Bridge was the fifth (current), more modern one and was completed building in December 1994 replacing four predecessor bridges, the first recorded bridge dating as far as the 6th
century! The tram tracks had recently been re-added to it allowing the Istanbul Tram to run over it. Regardless of it being a more modern bridge, the same name was kept therefore keeping with it all of its glorious history, culture and drama!
Michel and I leisurely walked on the top level watching the people fish. We then descended to the first level below where we enjoyed panoramic views of the Bosphorus Strait and of the city of Istanbul; where we also enjoyed seeing several boats passed by right next us and underneath the bridge.
Many people sat comfortably on chairs smoking pipes or drinking tea while others ate at the restaurants outside terraces. We could also see a handful of strings hanging from the fishing poles way above us. Michel teasingly wanted to pull one of them but I stopped him before he could!
Well, the entire bridge was eventually crossed where from the other end of it, we started heading towards a huge tower seen from the Galata Bridge! Monique :-)