a moving experience

as i said before, i am an expert in moving, but moving a cafe is something else.  i moved molly’s cafe from camekan sokak no 10 to camekan sokak no 7, right across the street.  i had some men do the hauling, but still i was running back and forth to move some things that i did not want broken (these guys are brut movers).  they kind of piled everything up and then i had to sort through it.  it turned out that i had too much furniture, as i had already moved in the furniture from the flat i had sold.  therefore, i had to squeeze my way around things as i unpacked.

usually my system is to have the big things placed where i want them and then to unpack the little things.  this time it was the opposite, as i had to get rid of the boxes and bags of things so i had room to see where the furniture could go.  at the same time, i had several pieces reupholstered, so they came in at different times.  ultimately i had to call the men back to move out some things.  one gardrob went to a friend across the street, some shelves went to the shop downstairs, and the other big things went up to the roof floor, which is basically storage.  yet again i called one man to carry the final things up there, as there was just no room for them.

the kitchen was kind of grossly sticky with fat, so when my new helper started, we cleaned it together.  actually, to tell the truth, i let her do most of it, as i was sick of cleaning and i  figured she was better at kitchens than i was.  she was literally scraping the tiles with a knife to get the crud off.  yuk.  the kitchen is  clean now and mostly settled into, though our ideas of organization are a little different.  it is good that it was newly set up so we can share it easier. as many women know, it is often hard to share one’s own kitchen. the main kitchen is  in the basement, so we are getting lots of exercise running up and down the stairs.  i hope to have a sort of intercom system going, though probably the exercise is good.

there is a bar in  molly’s cafe proper, so that is the secondary kitchen.  the soup or quiche or pie or whatever is prepared in the main kitchen, which is where the stove is, and then carried upstairs to be ready for serving.  i have put a fridge there too and already a couple of turkish men friends have told me i shouldn’t have one in the cafe room– but they don’t work here.

upstairs bar kitchen

actually, if i can digress, i think a lot of the things that were done for the original cafe were planned by men, as they are not very practical for working with people and food.  all the lights are controlled centrally, for example, which sounds like a snazzy idea but is actually not very practical if you want lights in a room and have to go way back behind the bar to turn them on.  another strange example is that about 20 centimeters from the sink was a big electric box that had all these central switches– which were not switches, but circuit breakers. i had an electrician move the box into the wall, so now it is smaller and safer but still somewhat impractical.  i did not have enough money or energy to have him put switches in all the rooms.

so, back to the cafe.  i had a big dining room table in my old cafe, but it took up a lot of room, so it is up near the roof now.  the main room of the cafe has several tables and looks like a cafe.  some people are more comfortable with that.

the cafe room

cafe room 2

there are two other rooms that contain my lovely green recovered furniture and various small chairs and tables.  one room has a library with one full wall of shelves mostly full of books in turkish and english.  there are also backgammon (tavla) sets and monopoly in turkish, along with a few decks of cards.  these rooms are lovely, welcoming and private at the same time.

cozy salon library

so, there you have it.  the new and improved molly’s cafe is very nice– better base, as the walls and floors had already been done when it was a cafe a few years ago. the other place was cute and funky.  this place is nice and funky, welcoming as usual.  i hope to see you sitting here soon!



  1. hi molly i visited your cafe last week with my daughter,we had breakfast and loved the place especially the kittens-well one in particular!how is he?

    • hi carol. glad you like the cafe 🙂 the kitties are all fine– come back and get one! if you are here in istanbul, get on my mailing list.

  2. […] a moving experience […]

  3. Hi dear and beautiful Molly. I just wanted to express how happy & comfortable I felt in your cafe last Saturday. It was a great pleasure and experience to see Danish poet Niels Hav over there, reading and talking to us and I would like to thank you for hosting such a great event and for your warm hospitality.

    Thanks once again.


    Mustafa Burak

  4. Hi Molly ,
    Great meeting you today(both times)
    Lunch was yum ,
    see ya next time

    • thanks rhonda! looking forward to seeing you again

  5. Marie says she is coming in October……I thought you were still teaching but this looks wonderful! Nice work Molly.

  6. Dear Molly,

    Your cafe is such a wonderful place, I´m very glad I found it, and exceptionally proud that my picture has found a new, temporary home in Istanbul. Thank you so much for doing what you do!

  7. Hi Molly,

    Would very much like to come visit your cafe over the weekend!


    • sorry carole-lynn, but you are about 2 months too late, as i have sold the cafe

  8. hi is this cafe still going ? please email me if you u get a chance leekalkan@aol.com thank you and i would love to visit the cafe when i am back in turkey thanks 🙂

  9. Dear Molly,

    we came to ISTANBUL to get a climbse about ‘another world’. We got it – but on the other hand it was real fun to relax for a while in your charming cosy Café, to enjoy your excellent cakes and last but not least the interesting conversation with you.

    No doubt, Molly’s Café is worth to be visited.

    Hans Joachim & Gabriele


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