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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

A Pocketful of Chickpeas

"A Pocketful of Chickpeas


Hernando Today correspondent

Published: May 27, 2008

Updated: 01:20 pm

I was first inspired to travel to Turkey by a poster framed and hung in our Turkish-themed family room. It showed an isolated hilltop palace, which was once home to a powerful and wealthy Kurdish chieftain. Although today long abandoned, and in various stages of collapse due to neglect and disassembly by the nearest villagers, the walled, hilltop complex, with its soaring towers and minarets, clearly suggested the grandeur that was reported to have once existed there. So wonderful were the accommodations therein said to have been, that visiting dignitaries from Persia, and other eastern places, were full of its praise by the time they later reached Constantinople (today's Istanbul). It was even breathlessly reported that the palace had solid gold plumbing. The Sultan was so irritated by listening to his guests rave about Ishak Pasha's palace that he made the popular Kurdish chief persona non grata (unwelcome) in Constantinople. For years, I dreamed of taking my cameras there"

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