One hundred years ago my husband’s grandparents escaped from a genocide.
There are a lot more Syrians in Yerevan than there were two years ago. Everywhere we go, we meet people from Aleppo, a city which, until very recently, was home to one of the largest Armenian diaspora communities in the world. Since the start of the troubles in Syria, this diaspora has been returning to Armenia.
There are a lot more children on the streets of Istanbul. The streets are full of children. There are young girls aged eight or nine begging on the streets. Women cradle young babies in alleyways and street corners, their hands outstretched.
Tarlabaşı Boulevard (pronounced “Tar-la-bash-uh”) runs more or less parallel to the grandiose pedestrianised İstiklal Caddesi (Independence Avenue), in the boutique-chic district of Beyoğlu, but no similarity exists between them. Tarlabaşı is like the dark twin of İstiklal. Most Istanbul folk are afraid to even go there, and I’ve lost count of the times I’ve been…