Just over two weeks ago we were sipping tea in a tulip glasses and looking out over the Golden Horn. Istanbul, a huge city – more than 18 million people – is hot, dirty and noisy. It is also oneof the most amazing cities I have ever spent time in. Galata, the Maramara Sea, the Bosphorous have long histories and are steeped in stories.
I’d come to research setting and stories for the next Pyrate Boy book. Although the book will be set in the 1750s, there’s much here that probably hasn’t changed since then. Men fish off the bridge, there are rows of stalls selling chains, or anchors, in all different sizes, a man has set up a stall near the port to show off his two-headed rabbit.
And as a full moon, lemon yellow, rises above the river, only the huge cruise ships that appear one night and disappear the next, remind you that this is the 21st century.
Already I want to go back, in the winter.