Wednesday, April 29, 2009

I have met all the foreigners in Turkey

I'm in Istanbul, I've found a hostel.

Yesterday, I went to Troy. The morning I spent in my hostel, since I again woke up with GI problems. I've got a couple theories, ranging from more to less probable as to why. But, by 11 AM I was feeling mostly better, aside from a sharp pain in my gut whenever I did anything especially strenuous... like stand up. And I decided that I couldn't let my limited time in Turkey be impinged upon by silly factors like my body, so I headed out to Troy.

Now, the site itself is actually surprisingly small. Or compact, at least. But there is a lot of stuff there. It's really quite an impressive feat of archaeology that they were able to dig through the 9 layers of cities that were built there over the ages.

After Troy, I went back to my hotel, rested for a bit, then took the bus to Istanbul. I actually accidentally took my second ferry ride, since on the Asian side of the Sea of Marmara, you have to go significantly out of your way to get to Istanbul, while the European side is pretty much a straight shot.

Now, I say that I've met all the foreigners in Turkey because I've started running into the same people. You wouldn't think in a country this large that would happen, and by and large it didn't happen in even smaller countries, like Jordan or Lebanon. Remember that Czech/Slovakian couple from Selcuk? They were at Troy. And then when I got into my hostel in Istanbul, there was a Korean girl that I also met in Selcuk.

And the ANZAC house hostel in Canakkale was practically deserted (just me and 3 other people--oddly, 2 of them were also academic biologists, bringing the count to 3 that I've met so far on this trip). This was a big surprise to me, since ANZAC Day, the anniversary of the Gallipoli invasion, was just last week, and so I figured there'd still be a pretty big complement of Oceanians around, but this is apparently not the case. I guess they all went home.

In Istanbul, apparently I'm staying in the Korean hostel. It's chock full of Korean people, there's a giant stack of Ramen on one of the walls, and all the signs are in Korean. There's a water cooler, and all that I know is that something about it is OK.

Anyways, I'm off to procure transport to Athens (bus or train, I don't know... I think train might be somewhat cheaper, what with my EuRail pass, and probably faster too!), then explore Istanbul!

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