Part of my "The joys of waiting for the ferry" collection, shot in Istanbul, October 2011.
A wall, with windows - of a different kind.
Need some cash? Right across from the ferry dock at Üsküdar (one stop at the Bosphorus end of the Golden Horn line, as the text at the top of this building suggests) we find this ‘bank’ of ATMs – from seven different banks, no less! Handy for when you’re waiting for the ferry to arrive, or just coming home from your work on the European side.
For us from the Netherlands this is an unusual sight though: our banks make use of a common electronic network for their ATMs, which means that you can use your debit card from practically any bank at an ATM from practically any bank, and without any extra cost. Obviously, things don’t work like that in Istanbul!
(Don’t miss the man all the way to the left; looks like a security guard to me – not paying attention... but he could be keeping an eye on the ferries, of course!)
At the same time I found this sight symbolic for the smoothly-running economy in Turkey, even while in the rest of Europe we are facing a financial crisis. (It’s slowly making itself felt in Turkey, but not as bad, yet, by far.) There are a lot of jobs, apparently, there is a lot of building going on, and there is a lot of trade in Istanbul. All of that needs banks, banks need to hand out cash, and this is the (one) way it’s done...