Despite their many and long-held animosities, Turkey and Greece have a lot in common. Not that either of them would admit it. When I visited Athens a few years ago, people often stiffened noticeably when we told them we were from Istanbul, and then insisted we absolutely must try "Greek baklava," "Greek coffee," or "Greek kebab" -- all of which tasted pretty much exactly like their Turkish counterparts.
|See my toes? They're in Turkey. That island offshore? That's Greece.|
"Sayin musterimiz, yurt disi operatorden sinyal almakta oldugunuz icin Turkcell Dunya tarifesi ile ucretlendirilmektesiniz," read the first in a barrage of text messages explaining call and SMS fees in Greece and touting the "avantaj" of Turkcell's international calling packages.
Dear customer, you are getting a signal from an international operator and will be charged Turkcell World fees...
The nearness of Greece is particularly keenly felt on Turkey's Aegean and Mediterranean coasts, where places like Ayvalık, Bozcaada, and Kalkan retain the distinctive architecture of their historical "Greek quarters," if not the residents, relocated in the population exchange of 1923. Near Fethiye, an entire town, Kayaköy, stands empty, its stone homes never re-inhabited after their owners were forced to leave. Continued saber-rattling today over Cyprus and an Aegean territorial dispute are further proof, though, that closeness doesn't always lead to comity.