Istanbul - Colorful birthday

Just in time for my birthday the rain finally stopped! Ironically this was also the day I had planned to spend mostly sitting inside... But don't let the glimpses of blue sky fool you, the wind was still icy cold!

Going for my first appointment in Cihangir, past colorful ruins.
This is where you can find all the antiques shops.
Road construction on my way.
There had been a small misunderstanding with my appointment but right next door was this plant shop / café where I waited and had a nice brownie. Check it out: Müz

No shop here is complete without the visit of a friendly neighborhood cat. These cats don't belong to anybody in particular, they just make their rounds, it seems.
The tattoo artist Resul Odabas finally arrived and after a short discussion decided that he could squeeze me in before the next customer because my tattoo wouldn't take too long.
Here he is working on my ankle. It hurt just a bit, actually less than I had expected. But halfway through I needed to pee - so that distracted me anyway.
The result!
I chose this for many reasons: first of all, it's my 20th time in Istanbul and I've bee coming here for 20 years - I wanted do something special for the occasion. I have always liked red tulips and tulips are also the emblem of the city. The design comes from the traditional Turkish tiles that I love so much. 

Here's the man: Resul Odabas, very talented artist, I can highly recommend him. His original designs are really awesome too.
Walking back, another take on the ruin corner.
Up to Istiklal and we're back to glamour! The newly renovated Grand Pera building which among other things houses the new Madame Tussaud's. This one's on my to-do list for next time.
Inside it gets more modern.
After a nice lunch I got on my way to the hairdresser. There is some nice street art in front of the entrance.
I look like a scared rabbit but that's just because I didn't quite know where to look for this mirror selfie.
Fortunately I brought my iPad to read a book because I was going to sit here for almost 3 hours!
I got ombre coloring, a haircut and a manicure.
Walking back to the apartment - here's the front view of the big construction site I saw the day before. It promises a bright future...
For my birthday dinner I had chosen a Russian restaurant, the 1924 Rejans. Very nice historical place.
Me and my new hair.
The food was OK but didn't quite live up to the hype.
My dessert was spectacular though, the chocolate Fabergé egg melted under hot vanila sauce. Basically, I should have only eaten this, I am sure there were enough calories for a day in it!
The problem was also that we ate soooo much that when my friend and I went to dance tango, our bellies weighed us down. So we kept it short and I went home to sleep and digest in favor of more time to spend awake the next day.
I also wanted to let my new tattoo rest and not risk anybody bumping into it.