Status Update:

Current location: Bochum / Germany

50 countries, 1226 days, trip mileage: 124200 km

18 Jun 2008

Turkey (1)


It’s a quiet evening just after sunset in the West of Turkey, and I’m surrounded by a group of people who are all curious about me and my motorcycle. A few of the people speak good English, trying their best to explain directions to the nearest hotel to me – and although I’m trying hard to listen, I can’t. Their words end up somewhere in the back of my head – but instead of processing the words, my brain is occupied with a rather discomforting discovery: Just a second ago, whilst asking for directions, I realized that one of my teeth has a huge hole in it. But how did it get there?

It slowly dawns on me: over the course of the day, I had been concentrating on the roads and didn’t talk much – hence I didn’t realize what had happened in Sofia this morning: what I thought was a small stone on that takeaway pizza I had prior to departure, was in fact a bit of an old composite filling that’s now missing. It’s OK for now since it doesn’t hurt – but it’s a fairly big hole just above my gums, on the inside… and on the long run it could be difficult to keep clean and possibly cause further problems. However, since there’s not much I can do about it right now, I better concentrate on the immediate priorities of a some food, a beer and a good nights sleep. And so I ask for hotel directions again.

The next day, I meet up with my travel-partner Len in Bandirma, on the South of the Sea Of Marmara. As part of our trip preparations, Len had made contact with Bora Eris, a local motorbike enthusiast from Bandirma who also owns a shop for tires and helped to organise various spare parts. Just as Len and I walk back to the hotel, we bump into Graham (another overland motorcyclist we had met before in England) and another 10 minutes later his travel-partner Andy arrives.

Over the next few days, Bora proves to be very helpful and accomodating: in between sorting out spare parts and servicing the bikes, we drink lots of Turkish Tea, and towards the end of our time in Bandirma, we can leave the bikes in safe storage for a few days and take a passenger ferry up to Istanbul. Top man Bora!