Postcard: A Pomegranate Cart in Turkey

I'm usually not one for tourist attractions—museums and the like exhaust me, and while I dutifully tour the sights when visiting a new place, secretly I prefer the following itinerary: eat; wander around until hungry again; eat. On my first visit to Turkey I was captivated by the many markets and street vendors, but compelled to follow my tour group as they made their way from historical site to historical site. Admittedly I'm very thankful I didn't miss the Ayasofya, Blue Mosque or any of the other breathtaking places we visited, but after a particularly effortful tour of the ancient city of Ephesus, battling language barriers and crowds, I was beat. As my companions picked out gifts, I dodged the vendors waving trinkets and postcards and made my way towards one of the stands I'd been eyeing all day: a man pressing fresh pomegranates, one by one at astonishing speed, in a hand-powered metal press. I gave him a few coins and he handed me a plastic cup of jewel-toned liquid. The pulpy juice, sweet but with that tannic quality that makes your mouth pucker just a little, revived me. —Laura Sant

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