Room of a photographer’s store

Someday I used to be within the higher room of a photographer’s store when two Turkish ladies got here in and eliminated their veils, standing with their backs to the English infidel. One was clearly a lot youthful than the opposite, and appeared to have a ravishing determine. I used to be gazing at it, maybe reasonably steadily, when, evidently conscious of my look, she turned slowly and intentionally spherical. For 2 or three minutes she confronted me, seeking to proper and left of me, above me, even on the ground close to my toes, together with her massive and delightful blue-gray eyes. She was pretty. Younger, maybe eighteen, she was barely painted, and her eyebrows and lengthy curling lashes had been blackened. Her options had been good, her complexion was easy and sensible, and her expression was actually lovable. It appeared to say to me quietly:

It’s silly ever to hide such a face

“Sure, you might be proper. It’s silly ever to hide such a face as this with a veil when actually there’s not an excessive amount of magnificence on the earth. Mais que voulez- vous? Les Turcs!” And the little hanum certainly moved her skinny shoulders contemptuously. However her aged companion pulled at her gown, and slowly she moved away. As the 2 ladies left the room, the photographer, a Greek, taken care of them, smiling. Then he turned to me, unfold out his skinny palms, and stated, with a shrug, “Encore des desen- chantees!”

I considered the disenchanted in the future as I sat among the many letter-writers within the massive and roughly paved court docket of the “Pigeon’s Mosque,” or Mosque of Ba jazet II. For hours I had been wandering on foot by means of the higher quarters of previous Stamboul, and I couldn’t launch my thoughts from the uninteresting strain of its affect. All these wood homes, silent, ap-parently deserted, shuttered—streets and streets of them, myriads of them! At times above the carved wooden of a lattice I had seen a striped curtain, low cost, dusty, hanging, I guessed, above an inexpensive and dusty divan. The doorways of the homes had been massive and strong, like jail doorways. Earlier than one, as I slowly handed by, I had seen an previous Turk in a protracted quilted coat of inexperienced, with an enormous key in his hand, about to enter. He glanced to proper and left, then thrust the important thing into the door. I had felt inclined to cease and say to him:

“That home has been deserted for years. Each one has migrated way back from this quarter of Stamboul. In the event you keep right here, you may be fairly alone.” However the previous Turk knew very nicely that each one the homes had been full of individuals, of imprisoned ladies. What a destiny to be one of many prisoners!

 

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