CARTE POSTALE NOSTALGIA
Post Cards From My Father's Biscuit Box
This section contains old postcards my Father collected throughout his life;
many dating back to as old as sixty five years. These postcards were collected
by my father during his High school, College and Graduate years, as well
during the times when he traveled across the world. Not all of them were hand
picked by him, some of the cards were sent to him by his three traveling
brothers, Ethem, Nizamettin and Mustafa, as well as his mother Sidika and best
friend Temel. His vast collection of postcards are from places from one
continent to the next including Istanbul, Samsun, Izmir, Berlin, Belgrade,
Lisbon, Dusseldorf , Brussels, London, Paris, Cairo, Haifa, New York,
Washington, D.C., Florida, Boston, and Cleveland to name a few.
During all these years of collecting and traveling, my father kept the
postcards in a metal square biscuit box. The box was tucked away safely in my
Father's book case in the apartment in Istanbul where my parents lived, along
with his Engineering books from the Humboldt University and Massachusetts
Institute of Technology. The box was rarely opened, and when it was, it was
not by my Father but probably by myself or my other two brothers , who were
visiting from the U.S., and for a quick glance by nostalgic instincts.
I never knew that his old pictures in his album and postcards in the biscuit
box would one day mean so much to me. Years ago when I visited Ellis Island, I
had thought how years before I was born, my maternal grand father Suphi had
come to the Island as a young man, but was shipped back home for health
reasons. It was a strange feeling to pass through same hallways and step on
the same ground once my grandfather had walked. Almost a year after my father
passed away, I had a similar feeling when our ferry docked at the Heybeli
Island, one of the "Prince Islands" in Istanbul. Here I could see the same old
Naval Academy building , where my Father had spent his high school years as a
young cadet. I was looking at the students in their white uniforms boarding
the ferry who were probably going home for the weekend and away from the
boarding school. Again in their eyes and smiles, I tried to see the joy my
Father would have years ago when he was going home on a sunny day like this in
When I came home that night, I decided to open the Biscuit Box and bring the
postcards back with me to the United States. I knew, every postcard had a
picture and more importantly a story to tell. Most of the postcards were blank
but they were giving me clues where my father or my uncles had once visited in
To my surprise, some of the postcards actually had a story written on the
back, as well as, a stamp and years ago had made the long journey across the
ocean long before me.
I believe every life is like a book. Every book deserves to be read no matter
how ordinary it' subject may be, because it will tell the readers a unique
story. So is a life; no matter how ordinary or unique it maybe, it needs to be
recorded and the story told to others. Such is my belief.
I will start with the postcards first and eventually add the matching stories
to each section.
Enjoy the postcards.
December 23, 2008