Monday, 13 June 2016

Mon 13 Jun 2013. Troy to Ephesus

Mon 13 Jun 2013. Troy to Ephesus
Happy Birthday son Justin. Strong winds blew all night (great for washing). Took off down the road, paid admission (then parking!) to get into Ruins of Ancient City of Troy, found out it was built there to take advantage of country's best sailing winds for trade and defense. Site contained most levelled (and thus less interesting) ruins we have seen. Saw unearthed portions of bastions, gates, ramps, theatres, halls, residences, baths, drains, columns, carvings, spheres, all sited on a hill with panoramic views. 

Tackiness was less than we feared, given the plethora of stalls selling horses of every size and material.  GirlRob climbed 3 ladders up to the top of huge wooden Trojan Horse to have her photo taken like other tourists before we departed. 

Winds continued, saw farmer watering down his hay in back of truck (guess it's a fire hazard in warm dry winds) Horse and cart is certainly a popular means of transport - but it does look amusing when carting white goods! Sign on bridge: caution strong winds blow up valley. Off south towards Izmir, olive trees were anchored on all sides by sandbags. Beautiful drive down coast road (BoyRob would have enjoyed views more if road less windy and bumpy!) olive groves on hills, market stalls along road selling olives and dark-coloured oil in every shape of jar and bottle.

Came down from hills and ran along sea. Multiple stops at traffic lights going through towns was annoying for the driver but gave a good chance to observe daily life. Given the ad hoc driving performances its probably a good thing that people cross under road rather than use pedestrian crossings. Hazy blue sea reflecting overcast sky. Turks we've met or overheard to date have been loud, passionate, with lots of expansive arm/ hand gestures. Only the men sit around in cafes, drinking little coffees and smoking endlessly. Quaint old couples, snowy-haired bent old men in waistcoats with collared shirts and dowdy sour-faced women in headscarves. Condensed apartment living down by seaside, ringed by mountains, all with a clutter of solar hot water and satellite dishes, outdoor ovens on balconies all on same side with single chimney/ flue going up three or more floors. Busy marketplaces, not many people on beach on a Monday at midday. 30⁰ outside, yuk. Restaurants mostly closed - must be for evening living, most don’t eat lunch during Ramadan. 

Pulled in to cafe beside service station, found it beautifully presented, almost a museum of olive oil making history, photographs and old implements, presses, jars and barrels. Delicious Turkish meal, shared a plate of stuffed eggplant, red beans, and eggplant omelette. Toilet was in BP servo - fully automatic, loved that the door to exit rest rooms was timed to the hand-wash tap, so fancy! Blustery winds continued, whitecaps on ocean and small waves onshore. Circled massive city of Izmir, and had a good run through to Selcuk, our destination for today. Even though we'd received an email from Guy that the campsite Boomers had stayed in two years ago was "dodgy" we followed the coordinates to have a look. Dodgy indeed - track virtually impassable, two sets of gates firmly locked, goats on top of the picnic tables and eating the children's play equipment, cats, dogs and chickens running riot through the "Garden Camp". Even though the owner ran out saying "come in, come in" NO THANK YOU!! Drove out to beach to the alternate one recommended by Guy - the amenities were satisfactory, showers lukewarm, and although the water was dirty it was pleasant to walk to the breakwater and jetty. We had a cuppa before bed under the awning in a light rain shower, watching the beautiful colours of the sunset.
Yes, small minds to find this funny...

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