Travelled to Konya from Antalya yesterday without any mishaps nor misdirection. Konya is the home of the founding of the Mevlana religion, more commonly known as the Whirling Dervish`s. Unfortunately the cultural centre where they do their ceremony is only open to the public on Sundays so we will wait to see the ceremony at another lodge. However we did go to their original lodge and walk through the museum. Very enlightening….a religion that was founded in the 1200`s and discontinued by Ataturk in the late 1800`s, early 1900`s.
Today we drove along the Silk Road which is now a 4 lane highway….no camel tracks to be seen! We stopped at a Carnaversaris which were the `hotels`for the camels and their handlers while on their journey to Istanbul or Antalya….both port cities where they could get their wares shipped to Europe or other destinations.
From there we drove into the Ihlara Valley where we started to see the cave churches and cathedrals. There are frescos inside these caves from the 1200-1500 time period. Although it was quite some climbing it was well worth getting inside to see the intricacy of labour, engineering and art. I have probably 100 pictures so just to give you some idea of both caves and fresco here are 2.
Our day ended at our own caves to dwell in for the next 4 days. Not shabby living in these here caves (although we did pass the Flinstone Cave Hotel on the way in!).
Off to bed now as we are being picked up at 4:20 am to get ready for our hot air balloon ride to watch the sunrise over the mountains! Yikes and Yay mixed together for this one so not sure how much sleep will be on the plate but will try.
What a flurry of 6 days which seem like a month at the same time as all too short. We have:
- had meetings for 3 days
- Congress for 3 days & 1 more to go
- Tropical storms like I have never seen. We are all fine but what theatrics over the sea! Glad I was not on a boat.
- Met people from Nigeria, Georgia, Russia, Ukraine, South Africa, China, Japan, Malaysia, Mongolia, US, Columbia, Venezuala, Australia, Ireland, Spain, Poland, Mexico, Greece……and many more which I am foggy on right now.
- Danced at a Russian Party, tequila shot (note that is not plural) at a Latin party, dined with different folks every meal
- Sold 100’s of shirts, collected 1000’s of dollars for ICF (yep I am the Treasurer but fortunately someone else will bank it for me).
- sure in all the conversations we have had the problems of the world will soon be settled
Having an awesome time! Exhausted in a very good way.
The Congress ends tomorrow and we head on our vacation part on Monday. Very much looking forward to it!
Couple of pictures…Nigerians and Canadians at various events!
What a glorious day! All around me is the sound of water….Mediterranean, pools, fountains….it is so peaceful. After a leisurely breakfast with some friends I did find my lounge chair on the beach (which was my goal for today) and sat staring at the sea for some time. However my fair skin & too much sun don’t go hand/hand so I have come back to my balcony (which the picture shows my view) and decided to finish the reports I need for tomorrow. This afternoon my suit will be on and I will be floating for some time.
There are many people already here to either enjoy some time at the resort before the Congress or to participate in some of the pre-Congress activities. Me, the former but head into meetings as of this evening until the Congress starts on the 23rd.
Sako Tanaka is my roommate. An incredible woman from Japan who is a retired professor of Leisure Studies. She doesn’t know it but later this week she will be awarded our highest honour of the Druzhba Award for all of her contributions to the development of camping around the world. As a founding member of the International Camping Fellowship and a board member since that time (1988) she is certainly very deserving. Awesome stories of her life in Japan during the war and her life in general. I am always humbled by the stories of others.\
Off to report writing now.
Well almost…..1 duffel bag full of Canadiana contraband and to come home full of Turkey goodies, 1 suitcase full of more clothes than I really need but proud I limited myself to 3 pairs of shoes, 1 gift bag to carry on with a log of wood which has a very delicate stain glass butterfly wrapped in more bubble wrap than I knew I had so it can be presented to the Turkish Camping Association in one piece, my carry on not yet packed but the pile is standing beside it (lots of work looking things…yech!). Sure I will be paying for extra weight for my checked luggage.
Have checked in and got the last window seat on the plane to Istanbul and am the only person checked in for the flight to Antalya so have the first row window on that one (first row of economy that is)
House looks like a bomb went off as it was necessary to pull out every piece of clothing I own when making decisions on what might be needed for 2 weeks.
Have to admit that this time last week I never would have bet on being at this stage tonight. What a crazy couple of weeks it has been and although I will still need to finish reports for the ICF meetings once I get there, I feel in control and okay about leaving for the first time in some time.
Tomorrow…sleep in, house clean up, dinner with mom, give car to Jen/Dave and in turn they drive me to airport and I should be in the air by 1030pm.
This journey looks like it may really begin. Next post from my lounge chair staring at the Meditteranean?!
Well the picture certainly inserted but is quite large….nothing like life size baklava! How to shrink……nope can’t figure that out. Hints from those who blog? Back to researching that question.
Now to put sleep back on my list and see if that works. Good night!
Here I am at 2 am trying to turn my mind away from the 100’s (okay maybe a little exaggeration) of things I need to do in the next 10 days. Since I didn’t put sleep on the list guess it is why I am still awake and can’t cross it off!
As one thing on the list was to sort out how to do this blog business correctly…..here I am figuring out for all you guinea pigs to read. My first challenge is to figure out how to put a picture up and I believe I have just done that. Since it is just a lot of coding who knows but it should be a plate of baklava which I plan to partake of as much as possible!