Istanbul is a dynamic city. The interplay between European, Asian, and Muslim cultures left me awestruck and sweaty. I was most recently there to escape London snow and get some quality time with my friend John and someone literally named Michael Caine.
I was pleasantly surprised to stumble across this bookshop where a very nice older man explained to me that he recently had to close shop in protest of a police booth stationing itself next door (in front of the Dutch embassy no less), and sold me loads of starcharts for cheap because I knew a little bit about the Ottoman Empire. When I stepped outside it was raining, so I shoved the priceless (45 lira) mounted maps into my jacket. I looked like a big pregnant robot. Also I figured it might stop Turkish guys from staring at my boobs. It did not.
About an hour later it was still raining hard, and we stumbled across a building with a star of David on it, and, having been the only Jewey thing I saw in a country which I know used to sort of have a Jewish population, it drew my attention. Then I noticed that it had a huge police van parked out in front. So I decided to get a picture of myself in front making a worried face. Comedy gold!
Then I heard running, and then the expression on John's face was that of some complex hideous joke coming together, and in a few seconds following this picture being taken several things happened at once. I realized that I was standing in front of a synagogue. With a police van. With what looked like a box-ey thing under my jacket. Some Turkish cops came out and spoke in their native tongue very quickly, and I tried to show them that the bomb-shaped lump I had under my jacket was not a bomb, but they made the universal "STOP DOING WHAT YOU'RE DOING" signal and kept speaking loudly for a long time, but DURRR I don't speak Turkish guys! So I said that, which I think helped, because after that there was significantly less gun-touching, for which I was grateful. Finally they signaled for me to unzip my jacket, looked through my maps, and waved us along.
I think they were just trying to look at my boobs.