Mar 8, 2015

Onwards!

In 1901, Hilaire Belloc set out on an epic walk from Toul (in France) to Rome. He chose his path by drawing a straight line between the two points on a map, and attempted to adhere to this direct path as far as possible. (His account of this journey, "The Path to Rome," is one of the e-books I read while I was waiting for my foot to heal all those months ago in Italy.) One of the choices he made was to walk at night when it was cooler, and sleep where he could during the day.

Back in December, I had expressed a certain fondness for walking at night. The past few days have seen me struggling during the day, only to be revitalised once the sun has set. Tonight I intend to take advantage of the almost-full moon and cooler temperatures and hit the road an hour or two after midnight. Traffic on the D-400 is practically non-existent after 9:00 pm and I have spare batteries for my headlamp should I need to change them.

From all of the above, it should be obvious that the ferry companies no longer offer a direct connection to Cyprus from Alanya. This is what I'd expected, based on the experience of other pilgrims in the past few years, but the (out of date) information on the company websites had given me some hope.‎  ‎And yes, I am once again planning to go to Cyprus by boat rather than to Tripoli. After consulting with an old friend in Lebanon, I decided it was better to fly into Beirut. The divisions in Tripoli run deep, and have led to several outbreaks of violence in the past few years. It's calm at the moment, but it's just too close to the Syrian border for my liking.

Taşucu is 247 kms away by road, so in another eight days or so, I should be booking passage to Cyprus. Because I'm unlikely to have WiFi access very often, my updates until I arrive in Taşucu will be sparse.‎ My physical progress may be tracked online at http://share.findmespot.com/shared/faces/viewspots.jsp?glId=0sldYqR7VeaqhcOYWdCqxfiUxvX7hlgrb  The GPS tracker I'm using updates my location every hour while it's turned on and I'm moving, but the website only displays the past five days of activity. Kinda cool, but I can't imagine anyone apart from my immediate family checking it out more than once.

This isn't the update I'd hoped to be writing, as there are a few noteworthy observations from the past week which I simply haven't had the energy to write up. At least I've got a physical notebook to scribble in. Perhaps I'll do a post-facto update, or else just leave the Mediterranean coast of Turkey as an enigma to my readers.

4 comments:

  1. You'll be fine Peter, you'll get that ferry from Tasucu. It's just one drawback. You're nearly there. Think of what you've achieved so far.
    Thinking of you, all the way.
    Dominique

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    1. Thanks for your encouragement, and all the advice you've given!

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  2. I agree with your decision about Tripoli. I consulted with my friend who lives in Beirut and she suggested it wouldn't be a good idea especially as a solo female. Enjoy walking the coast and your final days in Turkey. I'm wishing you all the best of luck getting in and out of Cyrpus.

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    1. Thanks, Kym. :)

      One note: if you find yourself in Serik looking for a place to stay, ignore the people who tell you to walk to Belek on the coast and ask about the Öğretmen Evi. The "teachers' house" is a state-run facility, so it's unlikely to close any time soon. It's on the right hand side of the D-400, a little east of the hillside memorial to Atatürk with a huge Turkish flag.

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