May 28 A Quest (Day 244)

Today we went on a quest, taking the electric tram, looking for the apartment building that Linda has described in her recollections of living in Izmir in the early 1960’s. Her father’s military posting brought the family there for several years. As far as we could determine, with input from her siblings, the apartment was between the old NATO headquarters building and the French Honorary Consulate on Atatürk Caddesi (Street).

The pink arrow points to the old NATO building on the left and the green arrow points to the French Consulate building on the right. So somewhere in the buildings between the two is where Linda and her siblings spent some formative years! The street fronts the wide park and Promenade, known as the Kordon, along the waterfront that is a popular strolling area on summer evenings. We continued our exploration of Izmir with a visit to Kültürpark, the urban park and green space.

The main boulevard in the park. Around the edge of the park are shaded walkways.

It used to house a zoo that was relocated in 2008, but the space is fenced off and the infrastructure is crumbling. There is also an amusement park that wasn’t active this early in the day, maybe more active in the cool of the evening. The Art and History museum had been located in the park as well, but was moved to a larger venue recently. The museum building did have an exhibit about the Turkish War of Independence after WW1 that ushered in Turkey’s modern age under the guidance of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.

A picture of the entrance to Kültürpark in 1957 compared to our picture today.

A picture of the camel caravans in the 1920’s that continued into the 1960’s as per Linda’s recollection.

We walked along the waterfront back to the tram station, passing the original ferry pier that is now a police station.

We headed back to our accommodation, climbing the stairs and steep streets, to enjoy the sunset on the terrace.

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