The New York Times finally stops by my favorite city

The New York Times is talking about Istanbul, my favorite city in the world.

I remember the first time I was there, staying with friends of my family, going to one of the cooler rock shows I've seen, all Turkish kids in fashionable clothes sipping strong drinks and rocking out to the dudes on stage, and the last time I was there, on a twelve-hour layover between Azerbaijan and Macedonia, staying in a hotel room the size of a closet in some no-name neighborhood at the very end of the train line, trying to buy a watermelon in Azeri from the vendor on the street and being told he didn't speak English, getting my hair cut by some local barber I stumbled across in a cramped one-room salon with a familiar soap opera blaring in the background, ordering a good meal and chai at a hole in the wall cafe, watching the locals smoke hookah and play backgammon as the mosques wailed the call to prayer.