Last week after ambling through Beyoglu I took my lunch in the Ara Cafe. A really nice place to have a break! A little bit hidden in the Tosbaga Sokak.
Our guitar teacher fixed this place as meeting point when we first met and since then I love returning due to its nice atmosphere, their books and newspapers which are at yours disposal and also for it’s good food.
Sitting there in front of my tea – trying to undersand the turkish exhibition announcments in a cultural magazin – I see an old crookbacked man guided by somebody entering the cafe and sitting down right next to my table. Another guy reading the National Geographic magazin was already waiting there. Only when they unpacked 3 brandnew large-sized photo books and when they started inspecting them together page by page while discussing intensively about the content I realized that it was Ara Gülden himself who was sitting next to me. I was surprised seeing them discussing so lively and intensively. He seems to be an old man but still having his full mental capacity.
Coming home I tried to find information about him and his works on internet. I was surprised to see on different youtube videos that he still participated in panel discussions in 2015 with his 87 years behind him. I really would have liked to understand Turkish … it was amazing the attention and respect you feel in the audience towards his radiating aura.
Don’t hesitate to discover: http://www.araguler.com.tr/index.html