Hi World! Michele here…it is Wednesday night, August 31st at 10:25pm Turkey time, 3:25pm East Coast Time, and 12:25pm West Coast Time.
Yes, we are in Turkey! And it is awesome! We arrived in Instanbul last night and walked around a bit before going to the Fez Travel Office. We decided to do hop on hop off bus travel around Turkey and had to stop by the travel office to pick up our tickets and get a better understanding of how this whole system works. We briefly walked around the Blue Mosque in Turkey last night while on our way to the ATM but really, we will not spend any time seeing Istanbul until September 16th when we get back to that part of Turkey. I will say this…we have moved out of first world countries. Although Turkey is not 3rd world, I guess I would say it is a second world country. For example, I used a squat toilet today for the first time (while in a restaurant) and I took a cold shower tonight (no hot water at our hostel). Also, even though the place we stayed at in Istanbul had a toilet you were not supposed to put toilet paper in the toilet. Instead it went into a bucket by the toilet. If you are wondering what a squat toilet is…hmm…how should I describe this….o.k., it is basically a hole in the floor with two tiles on either side of the hole designated for your left and right foot. Needless to say, you do not flush anything. You use water in a pitcher that is located next to the toilet to wash whatever is in the toilet down the hole. If you happen to bring toilet paper with you, then you throw the toilet paper into a bucket. I apologize if that got too graphic for some people.
Anyway…..Today we were on the bus for 6 hours before arriving at our final destination (Canakkale, Turkey). At that time Mike and I separated for the first time in 3 months. Mike went to our hostel and I took a 6 hour tour of Gallipoli. Mike has been having a difficult time sleeping and felt very exausted. It is quite hot here in Turkey and because of this he did not have much luck sleeping this afternoon. Of course the place we are staying does not have air conditioning. Most places here do not have air conditioning. The Gallipoli tour was fascinating and the tour guide was a historian who was fantastic. I will give you the Lonely Plant version of what happened at Gallipoli (as opposed to the 6 hour version I got today Basically, during WWI, in April 1915, ANZAC (Australia and New Zealand Army Corps) and British troops landed on the Gallipoli pennisula, hoping for a quick victory against the inferior Turkish troops. However, several strategic problems turned the operation into a stalemate, and after nine months of horrendous causalities the Allied forces withdrewl and no one won this battle. There is a lot more to this but that is the 2 sentence version which is what you will get because I must go now. I’ll update again later. We will see Troy tomorrow.
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Tags: Category #13 Turkey