Sunday, March 8, 2009

the first storks

Today was a fine day for brunch at a palace. Yes, a palace. The Çırağan Palace was a waterfront Ottoman palace that was turned into a hotel in the nineties, renovated in 2007 and looks spectacular. Crystal chandeliers and balustrades glitter beneath ornately painted ceilings and outside enormous windows, the Bosphorus sparkles beyond palms.

Brunch was a divine buffet with everything you could hope for— blini and salmon, sushi, stuffed artichokes, cheeses, eggs in every style, pastries, foie gras and oh so much more! I started with a mini spinach eggs benedict, blini with roe and cream, a sushi roll, smoked salmon, a scallop and a delicious piece of raw fish. Then I went back for the stuffed artichokes, potatoes and cheeses of course. My delightful meal was finished off with a strawberry macaron, a mini crème brûlée, a syrupy pastry and a delicately flavoured pudding topped with mint and pomegranates. Heavenly. In between plates I sketched the view from my table of the palace's waterfront gate:

Once home, to my joy, I saw the first white storks returning from their winter migration to Africa. There were around 60 or so of the large graceful birds flying across the Bosphorus from the Asian side, right over my house. They were so close, I could see their eyes and feathers. Soon there will be hundreds riding the thermals over Istanbul. It is truly an impressive sight, mythical even, to see these creatures with such elegant long necks and huge powerful wings float silently by. I've looked forward to the stork migration since childhood, and this is the first time in over a decade that I've been in Istanbul at the right time. Seeing them today brought back a warm feeling of wonder inside me that I haven't felt since I was little.

I had to draw these after the fact— I was to awestruck to pick up a pen.


Carlos Alberto Arismendi said...

I only can say, when you appear in a picture like that. I feel the angels are coming to the earth and shine whith their light.

szaza said...

My goodness!
I don't know what to say :D

Anna Denise said...

1) AH! THAT IS THE COOLEST OUTFIT EVER! You look soo beautiful!

2) Oh my the fooood!

3) Oh man, you are talented. I have tried, but my fingers refuse to perform magic like that.

4) Carlos and Samantha sitting in a tree... ;-)

szaza said...

1) Thank you so much Anna! You've put a big smile on my face.

2) Isn't it pretty? I love pretty food. Even when I cook at home, I do my best to "beautify" it :)

3) Thank you again :)
You are very talented and I love your work. I was just looking at your Moly about an hour ago, and the vibrancy is unparalleled.

4) Haha :D

Margaret Ann said...

This is a beautiful exotic it! :)

I thought the pattern on the china plate reminded me of your flowing artwork...:)

szaza said...

Thank you Margaret Ann, I did like that china pattern. It went with the Turkish tiles and the ornate upholstery.