The attack here in Istanbul last week left me a little shaken. I love this city but I also want to live in a place that is safe. However, as I look at the world around me, no place seems safe… just less dangerous? Is it time to head out of Istanbul before it gets worse? Will it get worse? To be honest, I don’t see how it could get better at this point. Many of the countries close to or around Turkey are hot messes. It’s already spilling over. It is with these heavy thoughts running around my mind that I went out last night to see some friends.

One of the reasons I love Istanbul so much are the Turkish people. Obviously, I haven’t met all of them, but from ones I have met, these are lovely people. The words that come to mind are warmhearted, good-humored, open, and kind. Again, there are many sides to a culture but overall, I find that the Turkish people are one of the biggest reasons that I love living here.

So I was sitting at a table last night, practicing the little Turkish that I know, an impromptu jam session broke out. There was a vocalist within this group of friends and when someone asked her to sing a folk song, everyone joined in. Part of me didn’t want to video the event because for me, this was an incredibly special time.

For whatever reason, listening to the voices, seeing the smiles, and just being around that energy made me forget all of my heavy thoughts. I was happy in that moment. I had that rare feeling of being a part of something much bigger than myself and for that small amount of time, I disappeared into the occasion.

I will never forget last night. The video falls short, no question. However, I am hopeful it will give you a small taste of the happiness I felt of just being alive and enjoying life within that moment.


  1. This is a great post! The video was beautiful and made me cry. What a wonderful moment in time :).

  2. Susan Wachowiak

    Beautiful, Claire. I can understand how you endearing that moment was–sharing tradition with lovely people!!!! The music almost sounded like Gregorian Chant! Very soothing!

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