Monday, May 31, 2010

Stunnıng Turkey

Oh, Turkey. Where have you been, and I’ve not known about you?

This country ıs tops. I dıdn’t have solıd plans to come here, but after meetıng a Macedonian Turk ın a hostel and agreeıng to vısıt hım ın Ankara, I trıed to exhume what I knew (or was yet to ) about Turkey and ıt’s Flora.

In honour of the Turk’s addıtıons to the latın alphabet, and the fact that ıt would be paınful to retraın myself, blogs ın Turkey wıll mostly use them ın leıu, although ıncorrectly, of ‘i’. (thıs ıs ıt capıtalısed: İ, fun, eh?)

Compared to Armenia and Georgia, Turkey has cleaner, smoother streets, hıgher workmanshıp qualıty, and general wealth, but stıll retaınıng the charm of no-nonsense sımplıcıty and humılıty ın constructıon of funcıtonal edıfıces. If I could be the superfıcıal judge of a good EU Candıdate, I would wonder why Turkey has not been ın a long tıme ago.

To-day, wıth TVs ın most every establıshment, the mood ıs low as everyone ıs watchıng wıth sadness and frustratıon the news about the Gaza-aımed aıd shıps that were boarded by Israel. A sıtuatıon that was set up for trouble from the begınnıng- I am saddened that not even humanıtarıan aıd- ıf that ıs what ıt ıs- can be allowed to a war-ravaged people. The bottom lıne: a matter of who-knows-what-the-truth-ıs-because-ıts-been-hıdden-by-the-polıtıcally-motıvated, and the folks on the streets are stıll left sad and frustrated. Down wıth Polıtıcs. Grow more Flowers.

I came ın by way of Trabzon from Batumı, tryıng not to fall asleep ın the super-comfortable bus wıth the ıdea that not everyday wıll I have wındow-seat access to the black sea for entıre lengths of hıghways I take ın lıfe.

Turks are serıous-lookıng folks at fırst glance, especıally the gentelman, lookıng all lıke they are on a serıous busıness trıp, but carryıng aprıcots home. But to engage a turk, and you wıl be dutıfully served/helped to effıocacy and awarded a great flash of a smıle-wıth-eyebrows at the end of the encounter. It’s Gold.

At least that what ıt ıs lıke on my second day ın…
I’m ın the hıgh ancıent cıty of Erzurum, preparıng to backtrack ınto the mountaıns to get a more ıntımate look at the great landscapes full of rock-gardens I passed on my way here ın yet another soporıfıcally comfy bus. Sweet steppe, here I come...

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