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Published: August 18th 2014
I know much has been wrıtten about this incredible city. As my travel guide says in the preface 'ıf ever there was a happening city is has to be Istanbul.' Ok, I'm sure that could be said of a few other great metropolitans but Istanbul is, I can confirm, a very, very busy place. I won't say too much because I'm rather exhausted. You see I have spent most of the day trying to change a flıght ticket and it has been very, very frustrating. The crux of the issue is that I have not been technologically agile enough to negotiate the change ın dates and attendant fee differences. Ataturk aırport has NO INTERNET TERMINALS people. It has plenty of wı-fı but without a gadget you are hamstrung, as I was today. If you are new to the ınternet/cybercafe scene in Turkey you are in for some more brain-taxing puzzle solving as you find yourself confronted by a keyboard with an extended alphabet: ç,ş,ğ & ü are on the rıght of the qwerty adjacent to the return key and the regular 'i' on the Englısh keyboard has exchanged places with it's Tukish cousin 'ı' without the dot (hence the fact that
my text is a bınary creature - not every 'i' has been dotted). Other characters lıke @ and $ are activated vıa an Alt Gr key so touch-typing proves difficult.
Anyway, I have soldiered on at various 'I' cafes, at the Otogar (coach station) and near Aksaray, yet it has been as if I have been beating my head against a brick wall. The real culprit I have to confess is not the cryptic kepyboard but Skyscanner.com, that great all-seeing oracle through whom the world's many aır termınals are connected. It failed me badly today. It promised me flıghts bookıngs only to fınd that, after beıng redırected to aırline or broker websıtes, ıt was all a lie. No tickets! What a mad month August is. I must try and unwind now and hope that my travel agent ın the Netherlands can fınd me an amended fare in the mornıng. I'm shattered....
So the moral of the story is... try get your bookıngs done ın advance and ıf there ıs a chance you are goıng to make or change a booking on the run so to speak, make sure you have the right tech ın hand. Woe is me
PS Staying at the Stray Cat hostel which is fabulous: no complaints. As my photo's will testify not all is bad!
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