QUIRKY TURKEY HAIRY MUSEUMS, BEE HIVE HOUSES, OH PLUS A FAT CAT AND PALACES FIT FOR BIRDS

HAIRY MUSEUMS

Avanos in the Cappodocia area has been known for it’s pottery and ceramics for thousands of years, but, not so many years ago, a guest house and pottery centre has created something to make your hair stand on end. 

With the potters shop above, the hairy museum is below in a cave type area and the collection of hair is extensive, with hair attached to every available surface.  The owner leaves, scissors, tape, pens and paper for labelling ready for anyone who wishes to leave a sample.

The collection started when the potter was saying his fond farewells to a friend who was moving away from the area, when he asked her for something to remember her by she left him a lock of her hair.  He put it in his shop and when people asked, he told them the story and often, women would offer a lock of their own hair and the collection grew from there.

Once or twice a year, a visitor to the shop will be invited down to the area housing the tresses and asked to choose their favourite hair samples, the winners of this are invited back for a stay in the guest house and workshops with the master potter.  A prize well worth the winning.

While the pottery and guest house remain active, the museum fills up a section of the shop where the earthen wares are stored. Visitors wander down the cave-like room with hairy walls and just about every other surface too.

For more information on this great place, https://www.chezgalip.com/the-hair-museum-of-avanos/

 

 

BEEHIVE HOUSES

The ancient City of Harran, once mighty yet now no more than a village on the border between Turkey and Syria, would be easily forgotten if it were not for its ‘ruins’.

For at least 3,000 years this traditional build, made of clay bricks and mud, designed to insulate from the searing heat of the Summer and having a domed roof area which has a chimney,  which collects and then expels the build up of hot air, keeping the house nice and cool, is possibly one of the longest lasting great architectural designs.  

Beehive in shape, they are not only insulated but are resistant to earthquakes, severe storms and still under construction nowadays, being highly practical and relatively cheap to build.

 

FAT CAT

Tombili a fat cat in the truest sense, was a bit of a sloucher, often to be found sprawled across steps in the Ziverbey area of Istanbul  Being very friendly, she was beloved by locals and much photographed.  She became a bit of a superstar as her photos were shared on You Tube and Facebook.  When she died in 2016, the mayor had a sculpture made and installed in her habitual pose on a step on World Animal Day.   Stolen a month later, the outcry shamed the thieves into returning it, blessem.

Ok not a cat, or even fat, but, Terrence did not want to be left out.

OTTOMAN BIRD PALACES   ISTANBUL

While wandering around Istanbul (and other Cities) you may see little palaces carved into the upper walls of mosques and other buildings.  For centuries, birds have been making their homes in these rather posh carvings.

Originally it is said that the houses were made not just to be visually appealing but, also, to show kindness to birds as an act of good faith which hopefully, would please God and in a more practical way, to stop the birds from building nests inside the actual buildings.

The Ottoman bird houses, truly are more palace like with more than one storey, full of complex carving and patterning and even balconies!. 

Now weathered and showing their age, the birdhouses still exist, one of the oldest ones is on the side of Büyükçekmece Bridge, close to the city, you can also find them in the Taksim area, Bagdat Street and in the spice bazaar area of  Eminonu, where it is said the shopkeepers put food on them (facing the Marmara Sea). 

 

 



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