Turkish Delight

It all began with a theory.

My theory that you can buy skill, bypass experience and excel at most things simply provided you have the right equipment. With no artistic ability, no previous lessons and no experience whatsoever, I want to prove that anyone with a pricey enough camera can be a ‘photographer’. Armed with a ‘photographer’ friend’s $3000 Canon SLR 12MP digital camera with a high zoom lens coupled with cautions of not scratching then lens and promises of if I break it I bought it (ya, ya, ya just give it to me already!), I had enough purchased ability in hand to take a full day’s worth of photos to launch my world class, world renowned, world famous photo exhibit the following week.

Easy.

To the Fest!

First subject: The 1st annual Turkish Festival in Vancouver. Saturday, July 24th marked the day for all Turkish Canadians and curious non-Turkish Canadians alike to gather on the front steps of the downtown Vancouver Art Gallery. Steps usually reserved for liberal pot heads were now graced by conservative Turks showcasing folk dances, traditional Turkish cuisine and of course, the traditional bouncy house for the kids (I think it’s in the back of the Qur’an somewhere – “you must have house of bounce”).

No pot heads today!

The Turkish Festival was scheduled to kick off at 10am and would run until 8pm. With strict plans to get to the fest before noon that day, I arrive promptly @ 2:45pm.

I’m immediately approached by a handsome young man (yay!), who turns out to be one of the organizers (oh.), who simply wanted to welcome me to the event and encourage me to check out all the booths (how nice!). Prioritizing the important things first, my first stop was to check out the food menu:

Next, time to check out the event menu (AKA the itinerary). It looked like I was just in time for Turkish folk music.  Reviewing the full schedule, I saw that anytime was the perfect time to arrive if you wanted to hear Turkish folk music (my 2nd favourite kind!).

Walking around the small venue, a quick glance at the few booths covered all I needed to see: Purses, silver dog tags, jewelry, artwork, calligraphy, books, etc. Nice to look at but I wasn’t in the market for any Turkish paraphernalia. Food, drink and entertainment were what brought me here and were the kinds of Turkish souvenirs I wanted.

Not understanding why the Turkish coffee was $5 for an espresso sized cup, the owner explained the individual process to make each batch (boiled with sugar, in a special saucer over a burner) and served in a decorative cup and saucer.  Later, it was further explained to me that the buyer can also keep the cup & saucer which was why it cost $5 (ohhhh).

Erm...no thanks, but thanks!

Buzzing on caffeine (damn that was good coffee), I almost zoom by the Turkish pancake booth but am stopped short by the delicious aroma. I’m told the Turkish pancakes are filled with beef or blue cheese and are made fresh on site.  Mmmmm.

rollin dough, pan grilling it then filling em up!

Not sure what to try next (not how much, just in which order), I hovered around the food area and was able to try several items free of charge (such generous people!) including baklava, dolmades, spring rolls, sweet bread, Turkish coffee and if I wasn’t already stuffed from the Turkish pancake and the cheese-filled flaky pastry, I would have tried the Turkish Delight too.

Belly full, it’s time for the entertainment:

Folk dancers & Folk music

The crowd really enjoyed him:

Done with the festival for now (belly full, remember?), I decide to take off and take some artistic shots while travelling around the city. Gotta get ready for the big exhibit, after all.

Admire my $3,000 talent

When it’s all said and done…

Overall, the festival was good times and I really enjoyed the food and drink (now I just need to locate a Turkish restaurant in Vancouver). Also loved the friendly organizers/volunteers in the light blue shirts – so handy.  With the architectural backdrop of the Art Gallery behind and water fountain in front, it was a beautiful location for a downtown fete. Most importantly – the food lines moved quickly with plenty of samples for the festival goers to try before committing to a whole dish.

As for my theory and upcoming photo exhibit, there might be a slight delay in that grand opening. What’s stopping me from being a world-class, world renowned and world famous  photographer is very obvious:

I needed a $4,000 camera.

Photo credits – all me, baby. Ask about pricing! 😉

It all began with my theory.

A theory that u can buy skill, fake experience and excel with the right equipment.
With no previous lessons, no artistic ability and no experience whatsoever, I want to prove that anyone with a camera can be a ‘photographer’. Armed with a ‘photographer’ friend’s $3000 SLR Canon 10MP digital camera with its high zoom lens and promises of if I break it I bought it (ya, ya, ya- gimme gimme!) I had enough purchased ability in hand to take a full day of photos to launch my world class, world renowned, natch, photo exhibit the following week. Easy.

First subject: The 1st annual Turkish Festival in Vancouver. Saturday, July 25th marked the day for all Turkish Canadians and curious non-Turkish Canadians alike to gather on the front steps of the downtown Vancouver Art Gallery. Steps usually reserved for liberal pot heads, were now graced by conservative Turks with folk dances, traditional Turkish food and of course, the traditional bouncy house for the kids (I think it’s in the back of the Koran somewhere – “thou shalt have the house of bounce”).

The Turkish Festival was scheduled to kick off around 10am and would run until 8pm. With strict plans to get to the fest before noon that day, I arrive promptly @ 2:45pm.

I’m immediately approached by a handsome young man (yay!), who turned out to be one of the organizers (oh.), who simply wanted to welcome me to the event and encourage me to check out all the booths (how nice!). Prioritizing the important things first, my first stop was to check out the food menu.

Then it was time to check out the event menu (aka the itinerary). It looked like I was just in time for Turkish folk music. Looking @ the full schedule, I saw that anytime was the perfect time to arrive if you wanted to hear Turkish folk music (my 2nd favourite kind!).

Walking around the small venue, a quick glance at the few booths covered it all.
Purses, silver dog tags, jewelry, artwork, books, etc. Nice to look at but I wasn’t in the market for any paraphernalia. Food, drink and entertainment were what brought me here so with the standard booths taken care of, it was on to the next.

I hovered around the food area and was able to try several dishes free of charge (such generous people!) Including backlava, green onion fries, sweet bread, turkish coffee and if I wasn’t already stuffed from the pancake and xx, I would have tried the Turkish Delight too.

Not understanding why the coffee was $5 for an espresso sized cup, the owner explained the individual process to make each batch (boiled with, sugar, in a special saucer over a burner) and served in a decorative cup and saucer. Later, it was explained to me that the buyer can keep the cup & saucer which explained the $5 cost (ohhhh).

Buzzing on caffeine, I almost zoom by the pancake booth but am stopped short by the delicious aroma. I’m told the pancakes are filled with beef or blue cheese and are made fresh on site. I take a few shots of the chefs working hard on the shells for this homemade operation and decide to order one. Mmmmm.

Belly full, it’s time for the entertainment:

The crowd really enjoyed him:

Oh kids. Apparently you’re not supposed to say anything negative about them so I’ll say nothing of their ‘performance’.

Done with the festival for now (belly full, remember?), I decide to take off and take some artistic shots while travelling around the city. Gotta get ready for the exhibit, after all.

I had fun at the festival and it was interesting to see representation of The art gallery was a great location for the festival as it caught all the traffic heading to downtown to walk around as well as anyone on the way to the beach. Plus all the organizers in blue shirts were helpful It was a great location for the festival As for my photo exhibit, there might be a slight delay in that grand opening. Although it may not be clear to you, its pretty clear to me. What stopped me from being a world-class photographer is obvious:

I needed a $4,000 camera.

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One thought on “Turkish Delight

  1. Pingback: A slip of the Mexican tongue « Living, with 'Nelley

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