Last day today in Istanbul, had a big late breakfast than final pack up, brought all luggage down to concierge, and completed the check out process. Now to browse the side streets of Taksim and spend the day just chillaxing!
Went through a few side streets and somehow ended back at the Istiklal Street. This truly seems to be the heart of Taksim.
Some more last minute shopping, then we decided to split and just roam about, and all meet together around 5pm.
For lunch we tried out the HOUSE Cafe, they served the best mushroom risotto.
Then it was more roaming about, finally off to Taksim Square to meet up with Jayesh & Priya.
All headed directly to Musafir Indian restaurant, wanted to have an early dinner. The chef “Momi Raja” cooked up a great Aloo Paratha and also provided the recipes to Nita & Priya (still waiting for the home version!). We were becoming regulars there, this was our third and FINAL visit.
(crew at Musafir Indian, Momi Raja – chef between Jayesh/Priya)
Bid our farewell, and headed back to the Hotel, quick freshen up and it was not long before our taxi was there to take us to the airport. Ride to the airport was met with heavy traffic, the half hour ride took over 1 hour – lucky we left early.
Nothing real flash about Istanbul airport, we had our last EFEs beer in the pub and than it was time to board. Unfortunately with the full flight, all four could not sit together. Flight departed on time @ 12:40 am, dinner service was quickly done which included the normal Turkish cuisine, Nita totally rejected it and I only had a small bit – lucky we had a big Indian dinner earlier.
Landed at Bangkok airport just past 2pm local time, bid farewell to Jayesh & Priya – they had to catch their flight in 5 hours, we had a 10 hour wait, so decided to head out and see Bangkok. We all shared a great holiday experience together and the memories will be cherished for a long long time.
Took a train from Bangkok airport to the Siam mall, which was massive and on a grand scale. Had a great Italian lunch, Nita was able to do some quick shopping – gifts for Mum and Tina. Then it was back at the airport, for a quick shower and a foot massage. Had a Thai meal at the airport around 9:30 pm, this was soooo nice & spicy, than around 11:10pm it was to the gates for our flight departing at 11:59pm.
Landed in Brisbane and jetlagged, Dad, Pooja and Veer came to receive us, Pooja was overjoyed at seeing us and even Veer was cracking up. Lunch & Dinner was at Mum’s, Nita was loving that – finally some good home food!
Slept in a fair bit, woke up the next day at 11:30 am, and then it was clean up time, Nita had lots of washing up to be done. Pooja was settling back in – sorting her dolls in her doll house. With me still in Istanbul mode, I refused to eat at home and ate out for lunch & dinner – it is always so good to just go out, order, eat and leave….. no making and cleanup mess!!!
Friday we were more settled, Nita was now back in action in here kitchen and cooked a full desi meal for lunch …. finishing off with rice and dhal. Around 12:30pm we got the confirmation call from in-laws in Fiji, Neha had been handed over to the airline crew as unaccompanied minor and was waiting for boarding – flight was delayed by 40 minutes and was now due to depart at 2:30pm (BNE time).
We got to the airport at around 6:40, just around when the flight landed, followed by the anxious wait, our baby was coming back.
After what seemed like an eternity, she finally emerged accompanied by the crew, Nita was already in tears, Pooja was just over joyed.
(Neha home after nearly 3 weeks in Fiji)
Headed home to mums place, lots of rejoicing…..
All good things must come to an end, this was the end of a great holiday for all of us, thanks to Jayesh & Priya for a being a great company and going along with my crazy jokes …….. till the next holiday “elvida” (goodbye in Turkish).