Jak Rutli and Suzi Sarhon

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This photo was taken in the summer of 1965.  Our cousin Esti Peres had a house in Caddebostan [a district in the Asian side of Istanbul, which used to be a summer resort until the 1970s.  It is now a rsidential area.]  for the summer and this is the living room of that house.  The one sitting in the armchair is our friend Jak Rutli!  They had him disguised as a woman and then made him sit in that chair for fun.  I am standing behind him.  I remember laughing like crazy that day.  As you can see we even took a picture of our friend impersonating a woman.

We had Jewish friends in Kurtulus and we saw them frequently.  During the week we used to play cards.  The husbands played poker and the wives played "relance" [a card game where the aim is to make sequences of at least three cards and finish the cards in your hand].  All our friends were Jewish.  They were all very good people of good families.  We also used to go to the cinema or theatre as a group as well.  When summer came we would often go to Buyukdere [a district on the Bosphorus, near the Black Sea] and swim.  I would say we had a "medium" social life.

Every summer we went to Caddebostan for the summer.  There we would hire a boat and go swimming with the kids.  When we came back, we went back home in a horse carriage.  We had a lot of friends.  I can give you their names as far as I remember: Ceni Jak Rutli, Esti Mordo Peres, Zelda Yomtov Behar, Izi Süzet Levi.  They were very intimate friends.  We were a big group and during the day we went swimming together.  Then in the evening we would meet again with the kids.  The children would play together, we would prepare food and eat all together.  Sometimes we would go out.  My husband had a car and we would go for rides.  We were together with our friends every weekend.  And when summer came, we would all rent houses near one another so we could be together all the time, both during the week and at weekends.  During the day we would go swimming and in the evening we would either go to the cinema or gather at one house.

Interview details

Interviewee: Suzi Sarhon
Yusuf Sarhon
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Istanbul, Turkey


Suzi Sarhon
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Other Person

Jak Rutil
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Ottoman Empire
before WW II:
Businessman, Retail merchant

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