Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Day 67: Mersin, Tarsus to Göreme, Cappadocia. 240km 28°C

Some days we are truly blessed by strangers we meet on our journey.
My hope is that sometimes we reciprocate.
You will meet some of these people in today's blog post.

There are also some very modern techologies and facilities in Turkey.
Today it is traffic lights in Tarsus and the service centre on the motorway.

We wanted to go to the birth place of the apostle Paul. 
There is a site in Tarsus purported to be the ruins of the house he was born in and a well.
We have been riding through lots of countryside that Paul  may have walked and visited by boat in his second and third journeys through Asia Minor in the middle of the first century AD.. For example in the Acts of the Apostles we read that he journeyed on foot and by boat from Antioch and Tasrsus and at preached at places that exist today either as ruins or places today... Troy and Ephesus, inland in Galatia, Caesarea in Cappadocia.

While we were in Tarsus I met a couple of  delightful men reading the paper and chatting over tea. 
Then I was truly blessed by the man who was tending the public toilets - including a blessing with orange flower water as I left. Sometimes it is the humblest among us who give out a gift beyond price. My heart sang.
Later I met Gamze who taught me some Turkist pronunciation.
In the afternoon I met a very happy bridal couple who were being photographed at our hotel. THis is the season for weddings and they take place over several days.

This was a peach of a day.

Paul's well in Tarsus.



This man s a blessing.

This is the first time we have seen these clever traffic lights. The pole and arch have diodes that light up red or green. Impossible to ignore.
This man blessed me in ways he will never know.

The highway north is many km of three lane motorway which Orlanda thrived on.
Mountains surrounded with summer haze.

Gamze. Wonderful Gamze taught me some Turkish. Tesekkür ederim, thank you Gamze.
The road stop was the best we have ever visited anywhere in the world. 
One of the features of the new development in Turkey is that the design and facilities are very modern.
For example the toilets are immaculate.




We have often seen farmers driving their tractors with their wives on the left mudguard. Here we also have a little boy who is curious about us.

And into Göreme our hometown for the next two nights.
Ahhh a rest day. But will it be restful?
This happy bride and groom were at our hotel.
 Our home for the night. In a fairy chimney cave at Kelebek Hotel where Kiwis are especially welcome. Ali began his business in 1993 with a few rooms for backpackers. Now he has a 47 room smart hotel which provides a wonderfully warm welcome. 

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