Blogs > News-Herald Food and Travel

Food and travel captivate Janet Podolak, who chronicles both for The News-Herald. Get the back story of her three decades of stories here. Guest bloggers and fellow News-Herald staffers also periodically share details of their trips.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Small world of Crystal Serenity

These street musicians in Istanbul stopped their lively playing when the call to prayer rang out.

When Dave Ashley reached out by email after reading last month's story about my Mediterranean cruise aboard Crystal Cruise Line, I searched among my photos to find his picture. Turns out he was home in Lexington, Ky.  after six months aboard the Crystal Serenity playing trombone with the ship's Galaxy Orchestra. He'd found my story while searching the internet for the Serenity.

 I'd taken plenty of photos of the orchestra after meeting  and interviewing  Emery Lenvay of Madison onboard the Serenity. He's what the cruise line calls an Ambassador Host, dancing away his days and evenings with ladies on board in exchange for his passage aboard the ship. Emery, in turn, introduced me to Mama Lee, a woman who sold her house to live aboard the Serenity so she can dance with Emery and other Ambassador Hosts. I  wrote about both of them last month and Dave emailed me to say he enjoyed the story. He knows both of them of course.

I spoke to Dave by phone to learn what it's like to be a trombonist  aboard a cruise ship. It's fun, he said, and he's returning to the Serenity next week in Barcelona to begin a transAtlantic crossing to several weeks in the Caribbean followed by a 72-day long long voyage around South America.  I asked if he could get copies of the Travel section to Emery and Mama Lee, who were so nice to speak to me.

I never the  never found Dave's photo, although I've  sent him copies of the travel section and he's agreed to pass them along to Emery and Mama Lee. While looking for Dave's photo, however, I  found this one of these street musician in Istanbul. We were eating dinner in a sidewalk cafe and they stopped at our table to play for us. I started to shoot a video and that's when the call to prayer rang out. The musicians stopped in the middle of their lively song and  headed for the mosque to pray. You'll be able to hear the call to prayer next week when my Shopping Istanbul travel story comes out. I hope you , Dave, Emery and Mama Lee enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

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