Mixed feelings in the far east of Turkey | World bike tour

Mixed feelings in the far east of Turkey | World bike tour

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Cycling thousands of kilometres straight, far  from home and through foreign countries is not just physically demanding and a great adventure, it is often above all a very emotional journey. We expected that Eastern Anatolia  would be challenging for us in that regard. Now after cycling about 5 months, covering over 5000 kms,   we’ve reached the far east of modern day Turkey. My name is Arev, it is Armenian for “the sun”. I got it, because I am Armenian.

While I would love for that being irrelevant, it unfortunately is not in the east of Turkey. This is a very different episode, as we speak about a topic that is very conflicting for some, including ourselves. We would appreciate it if everyone would keep a respectful tone in the comments. Growing up in Armenia there are many places I  only know from folk songs, poems and paintings   that reference the time not long ago when  Armenians still lived in Bitlis, Van or Ani. 

Anyone who’s familiar with the Armenian Genocide might see how cycling through Turkey could weigh heavy on Arev’s heart.  If not, well, this will not replace a history lesson, but there are plenty of  credible international sources out there. We’ll put some links in the description. Let’s just say that it had taken some time for Arev to  build up the courage to cycle through Turkey. 

That being said, until now we’ve had  a wonderful time crossing Turkey,   and I’m excited to discover the traces of  my heritage, but I’m also a bit anxious. We’re just in the process of  heading out of Diyarbakir.  Let’s go to Batman! I still feel a little bit exhausted.

Maybe I have a mineral deficiency, because  of the incredible amount of sweating. Shall we buy a Simit? Let’s buy a Simit! How much? 3.5 Lira. Three! Do you have one extra Turkish lira? What? I don’t understand! Sister, what’s the name of your YouTube channel? No Turkish, no Kurdish. German! World bicycle tour.

World bicycle tour? Sister, this beggar wants money! He is a beggar! Thanks! Bye - bye! Very tasty, Simit! People will sell Simit, chai, and breakfast stuff on the road.  Very good for us. But a hard business for the boys. There is another huge military base behind us.  There is so much police presence here in the city. Actually when we were in western Turkey  and said that we would go in this direction   everyone said “What do you want there? There is nothing! There are terrorists, it’s dangerous! Don’t go there!”  But obviously people here are just as nice, and living their normal lives.  

Standard of living is lower here and as I said,  the state force presence is overwhelming. There are trucks driving around in the city, they  look like war machines, but it says "police". Doesn’t matter where we go in this country. There is a lot of construction going on and also a lot of new mosques are being built.

Anyhow I still feel weak. I think I might have diarrhoea as well. Being sick on the road is the last thing you want, and so Mathias pushes through  100 kms in a day anyways. Also we don’t spot any bats flying around in Batman.

Mathias found a warmshowers host here, - Mehmet. But we can’t find his address and the boy is helping us to find him. What’s going on? He’s giving him a call. I think he’s doing it for us, so it gets cooler here. He also gave us some water. We’re already treated like a king and a queen here.

Gladly Mehmet arrives soon after,   and we get to know most of his  family at his nearby childhood home. While everyone is enjoying dinner I start a  frequent commute between rooftop and toilet. Because Mathias has very bad diarrhoea, we’re going to some kind of health centre now. It is probably not advisable to take medication at this stage, but after ending up in a hospital back in Greece, Mathias’ sole priority now is stopping the diarrhoea. Mathias, what are you doing? It’s the second time this year I have this problem.

Do you have pain in your stomach? Yes, a little bit here. For how many days do you have this problem? I think, since today. As the doctor is Mehmet’s friend he  allows us to take the IV bag with us,   so Mathias can receive the trustworthy  looking neon yellow fluid at home.

As far as we understand it is electrolytes  loaded with an extra syringe full of magic. City centre! Anyhow, after 12 hours of  sleep I feel a lot better,   which comes in handy as it  is going to be a busy day. Mehmet’s daughter started to work somewhere. Today is her first day and we’re all going to surprise her at her work place. Before we surprise the oldest daughter at the dentist's practice, we visit Batman's city centre,  where the youngest puts a strong  emphasis on exploring the candy shop.

Later we visit Mehmet’s friend, where we get separated entering the property the first time. Hello! Hello! So, we came to Mehmet's friends house Mathias and Mehmet are upstairs with the men, and I'm here, downstairs, with the women. Give it to me! Give it and I will film!  Now… first the living room. Don’t film.

It’s okay, enough! I’m filming you! How are you? I’m fine! Hello! Hello! After some interesting conversations and tracking down Rumeysa’s and Mehmet’s three kids we drive home for dinner. Kösetarla? It’s here. Kösetarla, Bitlis? It’s farther from here! Kayabağı?! Kayabağı is uphill. How will you ride? You can’t do it! That’s right but it’s all uphill. He says it goes steep up. I think I know it.

but every road goes up steep, so I think it’s ok. It’s getting incredibly hot. The weather forecast predicts 40 degrees celsius in this area. I’m still not fully fit. My best guess is that the tap water in Diyarbakir is not safe to drink.

A few kilometres out of the industrious Batman the  landscape looks much like stereotypical Eastern Anatolia. The villages feel quite remote, and  seem to lack basic infrastructure. We don’t see shops, nor women and children outside,  just some men, working the vast cornfields. Peddling those dusty gravel roads makes us hungry,   so we briefly return to the main  road to search for a restaurant. Someone is already busy with eating… It’s after 5pm. The thermometer is in the shadow, It's pretty much measuring the air temperature.

It's 37 degrees right now. 37°C ! Video? Yes, video. So, these nice guys just warned us that  in the next village there are dogs,   so we should be slow, because the dogs can bite us. So, thanks for the tip. These are shepherd dogs, they are not to play with, because they are trained to prevent the ship from going away and also to prevent other people from getting the sheep.

Thanks! Thanks a lot! *in Kurdish Thanks Thanks. Thanks a lot! Tobacco? Tobacco! Here they are planting tobacco.   There is a lot of water coming from the mountains over there.

That’s where we are going now. No, no, no, no…We have!  Look! I have a hat! Kurdish, Kurdish …  It will suit you, girl! No, no…!  Oh, this is how they do it, ok! But I can't see. “It’s a traditional scarf”, the boy  said. I have my first present here.  Because we were able to say “thank you very much” in Kurdish, they were really impressed. Also I believe he was pretty happy to get so close to a nice woman. 

Mathias! How do I look like? You look like an absolutely typical Kurdish woman,   that is cycling with short pants through the countryside. Very very typical! All the women that will see her now will be like “Oh, yeah! I’m going to do that too!” and then revolution! Ok, let’s go! The next morning we continue our way offroad,   and we leave the fertile lowlands of ancient Mesopotamia behind us.   Climbing into the Taurus mountain range,  again, the landscape gets dry and rugged.

I can see “Furkan Buffet”. I hope we get some  food here , because we ran out of food. Bitlis and then Van! First time we can see “Van” on the road sign. Yeah, I was so excited! What do we have here? Meneme, special  cheese with herbs, olives, yoghurt,   rose jam, and some yummy bread. This is more or less a typical breakfast. It’s an egg-dish,  but it contains a lot of tomato,  peppers, some onion, and some chilli.  Very tasty! Good morning.

Do you speak Turkish? No! German!  It's very dangerous, ok?! This road  is very dangerous for bicycles!  Ok! Do you understand me?  Yes, ok! We have to go to Tatvan.  Tatvan? The road to Tatvan is  very dangerous! Be careful!  Ok! Thank you!   It’s small, narrow and there are many trucks passing. We don't like that, but it’s the only way. What can we do?!  Now I'm a little bit afraid! Ok! This is all we can do! We are lucky that there is not much traffic, because it’s very early in the morning. Basically this is the problem, when the trucks pass us, while there is traffic from the front, they cannot get on the other lane. And because there are many bends in the road,  they can't see if they can go on the other lane.

Woah! This is very uncomfortable. Mathias! Mathias! Yeah! F***! Apparently that was a close call! Truck party behind us. Oh my god. Oh, wow! We’re just passing the second military  post within 1 km of the road. It even has a helipad.

Loads of barbed wire, fences, watch towers. I saw an armoured car. One of the many things we learned while bike  touring Turkey is to appreciate gas stations.  Hello! While we rarely buy fuel, much like a caravanserai during the height of the silk road, they quickly became essential for us.

So what can you do here? Sit and wash your feet.  And… The typical toilets look like this. There is never toilet paper in the toilets in east Turkey, instead they always wash themselves. This kind of toilet is actually great for us, for travellers, because they are more hygienic, as we don’t touch  the seat. And you can really get used to it!

Life is very different here. The social construct, how everything  works for the people here. How they grow up. I think it’s especially difficult for us seeing   how they struggle with things that are just not an issue in Germany. Because they grow up in a society that makes life very hard for them.

And I think it’s an important reason why we are on this tour: To see the differences in the world, but obviously not everything is great. It is really not easy and you have  different feelings. You feel guilty because you are able to even do this trip. I mean, place of birth, passport and so on. To see the world, be free, right? And then you see all the people every day that have so much less freedom.

It is on us to learn how to deal with those feelings and just to accept that the society in other countries works differently. I think it’s about the seventh or eighth time  today that I drowned my T-Shirt in water,   otherwise we would sweat way too much. Oh, that looks good! Really nice! Btw the small police car behind me looks more like a tank. Ok! This is Bitlis.

Hello! Wow! Stop, stop! All these buildings apart from the mosque remind me of Armenia. Prior to World War I a third of its  population was ethnic Armenian. In 1915 the 15,000 Armenians of  Bitlis were massacred. Today only some old buildings in the town centre stand as a silent reminder. Hello! Welcome! Take a seat, have some tea! Thank you, but we don’t have  time. We have to keep going.  Where are you from? Germany. German.

Thank you! You’re welcome! *speaking in German* Thank you!  How are you? *in German* Good! Very good! We have to go. Have a nice day! Goodbye! Have a nice day! It’s very funny. Everyone wants to  invite us for tea, which is very nice,  but sometimes we need to get to places, you know? We’re being led to our camping spot. We had some lunch in the city and the woman of the house asked “Oh, are you going to camp somewhere?” We said “yes" and then she replied “Well, my son has just the place for you!” And now this nice lad here, Mert, is showing us where we can put our tent for the night and it looks great! It has been some days since  our last proper shower,   so a spot for the night with access  to a river is … well, necessary. In less than one hour we  will finally reach Lake Van.  We’re most likely to meet Dani again, whom we met in Cappadocia.

He said yesterday that he will arrive in Tatvan in two days. So that was yesterday, that means it’s tomorrow. Hello! Everyone is inviting us for tea. We made it to Tatvan.

We’re almost in the city centre. Arev is getting  some Börek and bread stuff. There it is. Lake Van was the centre  of the kingdom of Urartu from about 1000 BC, and later of the Satrapy of Armenia, Kingdom of Greater Armenia, and the Armenian Kingdom of Vaspurakan. To say it is a longing place for people of Armenian descent is a gross understatement. Next we head to a local bike repair shop,   as my front brake has an issue  I couldn't bother to figure out. 

But now we just put new brake pads  on it and the problem is solved! How much is the repair? *in local language*  A little. How much? Okay. Sit, we shall drink tea! God is the greatest. God is the greatest! God is the greatest?! Ezan? Ezan. God is the greatest! Muslim!  I’m not muslim. Even if you are no Muslim, God is the greatest.

Behind us lies Tatvan. Somehow that city had a very unpleasant vibe for us.  We’ve decided not to stay here. As we left Tatvan in a hurry, we didn’t do shopping. Now we are in a situation that we, again, don’t have proper food.

We have some nuts and cookies, but nothing proper for dinner. Then we found this nice place here, which  looks like an outdoor restaurant area, but there are only these children here and  lots of chicken, and little chicken too. Chatting with the girls I learn that during  summer they attend a Quran school. Despite their young age they wear head scarves, because of Mathias’ presence.

In the meantime the boys admire our bicycles. Finally a woman comes out of the house. There is no food, but we may put our tent wherever we like. While we pitch our tent, they suddenly start to demand money.

And we’re leaving that place. And it’s not about the 100 Lira. It is that they first said “yes, you can put your tent here”, and then, like half an hour later they realise “Oh, maybe they have money!”. That’s not how it works. Just say from the start “Okay, you can stay here for that amount of money”, but don’t make someone feel like he’s welcome and then ask for money later. It’s a little bit strange. It doesn’t feel right, because it’s not honest. Right?

So that’s great, we now get to go to  a place where we can have some food. We’re camping next to a gas station.  Smoke is coming out of the chimney of the kitchen. They said it’s fine if we camp here, which is amazing for us. The next morning we have a nice breakfast with  the son of the owner of the truck stop. Mathias shows interest in Iranian licence plates  and soon enough we are back on the road. 

We ride through the mountains south of lake Van, take a little shower on the go, and see countless seagulls despite being hundreds of kilometres from the sea.  It kind of makes sense as it is a huge saline soda lake,  receiving water from the surrounding mountains, making it one of the world's biggest lakes  without an outlet, sort of a little salty sea. Hello! Hello, hello! Where are you headed? Van! Where to? Van. Van! Ah, Van, Van! Yes, a bicycle world tour. Ah, world bicycle tour World! Have a nice day! Have a nice day! The tunnel is well lit. But it’s very narrow,  

so we have to push the bicycles on the sidewalk. Yes. The air is very bad. There was a sign saying that the tunnel is 2.3 kilometres.

This will be fun. Could be 30 minutes pushing through the tunnel. Woohoo, amazing. The sight of Akhtamar island hits Arev hard and she takes some time to video call her dad, back home in Armenia. Despite not belonging to the country anymore this place is omnipresent for Armenians in everyday life. Not only are there countless works of art that reference this rock in lake Van, Soccer clubs, cigarettes, brandy, streets, cafes and restaurants,  you name it, proudly wear its name.

Anyhow, as it’s getting late, we  postpone our visit to the next day. So, I’ve learned about it since my childhood.  The name Akhtamar is about the princess Tamar…  According to the tale, the Armenian princess  was in love with a commoner. This boy would swim from the shore to the island each  night, guided by a light she lit for her lover. When her father learned of these  visits, he smashed her light one night,   leaving the boy in the middle of the lake  without any guidance.

His dead body washed ashore and it appeared as if the words "Akh, Tamar" (Oh, Tamar) were frozen on his lips. I can’t help myself, but are all Armenian  stories so depressing? What else is there to see?  Well, during his reign, King Gagik Artsruni the first of Vaspurakan chose the island as one of his residences. Okay, that’s good, keep going!  Today the only surviving building from that  period is the Cathedral of the Holy Cross,   because during the Armenian genocide, the church  was looted, and the monastic buildings destroyed. 

Oh, come on! In the following years the church was subject to extensive vandalism. Ahhhh…. In the 1950s the island was used as a military training ground, and the church was about to be demolished. This is enough! Well, the famous Turkish writer Yaşar Kemal, used his contacts to prevent the complete destruction and the church became a noted tourist attraction in the following decades.

2005 it underwent a heavy restoration by the Turkish government, being opened as a museum a year later. A museum? I thought it’s a cathedral?! Mashar, a Van native, loves to  drive his van around lake Van,   enjoying the beautiful landscape and taking photos of vans … Wait, no. That should read birds! We have to be careful with those  people who want to take us everywhere.  Van, my house! Because it’s too easy. Yes, I know, van-lifers complain that  it’s hot in the van during the day... Caravan tour, lake Van.

Lake Van, yes! Anyhow we had bumped into him sitting next  to his van on lake Van and he insisted on hosting us at his place in the city of Van,  to take us on a van tour around lake Van. During our brief 400 km excursion we get to  see the road around the lake we are about to cycle, a waterfall, road we will not cycle,  seagulls in a river, more checkpoints, old graves,   and pass by our favourite city so far, Tatvan,  and all the road we had cycled already. Oh, and of course Dani, who had been  chasing us is now ahead. That’s a big fortification. Aehm, can we please?  It is very steep here. Right  behind us. It just goes down. We keep pushing against the fierce headwind.

Why? We're trying to catch up with Dani,  until the late afternoon. Wohoo! Oh, hey there! Tired? We did it, yes! The wind! Yes. Madness, but we did it.

It’s quite brutal. What was Georgia? Gürgistan! Kars is your next destination? We’ll be in Kars in two weeks. We are slow, you know? In two weeks we're in Kars, then Georgia. Georgia.

Georgia, then Iran? Gerogia, Armenia, Iran. Armenia?! We had briefly met Dani before in Cappadocia,  about a month ago. Cycling with other people can be a challenge, so we agree to just see how it goes.

As for now, everyone is happy for a little change. We pitch our tents and enjoy our last sunset at lake Van. The wind today is stronger than yesterday. Come on! After a little breakfast / early lunch break in Muradiye we’re now heading back on the mainroad towards  Dogubayazit, which we’ll reach tomorrow. We’ve reached Caldiran. Something like  that. It’s still in Turkey though.  We don’t have a visa for Iran yet. I think it’s less than 10 or 15 kms away from the border of Iran.

One person stopped us and said we shouldn’t continue further than Caldiran,   because it would be dangerous to stay out there. We don’t know how to feel about that. Now we’re trying to find a place for our tents for  the night in this pretty barren landscape.

It’s also still very windy. We’re a little bit on  edge. So, there is a gas station ahead. So far we have very good experiences with gas stations generally.

Let’s hope this one is no different. We went from feeling a little bit insecure to feeling really safe. We not only asked all the people from the gas station and the  market, they approved of us staying here.  Then we have a dog walking around, not barking at us, so I guess he will be guarding us as well. And just when we went down with our bicycles a huge armoured car from the military arrived. Out came two soldiers, armed to the teeth. Really beefy guns, a lot of magazines.

And, Dany, you said they even had grenade launchers? Oh look, a car like this one! They checked with their command. They even told the next patrol that we will be camping here. So, I think we’re good. Pretty good, right? After an undisturbed night and a breakfast  we continue our way along the Iranian border,   passing countless more checkpoints. This time they asked to see our passports, but they were very polite. It was a very quick process. He checked the passports that it is us, and took a picture of mine. I think that is literally cow shit.

Yes, it is. They use it for heating in the winter. That was the second time we had to show our passports today. We’re very close to the Iranian border now. This is actually the most highly militarised area I’ve been to in my life. There is another military base  up that hill.

There’s fences, even with signs reading in German  “Military zone. Entry forbidden!” Hello! I think that way is the centre.  Yeah, the centre is just straight ahead. We stayed 3 nights in Dogubayazit, which is  only possible because of your support.   So a special thanks to our contributors  on buymeacoffee.com/aworldbiketour. >>> https://www.buymeacoffee.com/aworldbiketour

Good morning. It’s 6:45 AM. We still didn’t get rid of Dani. The Danish guy is still with us, which is cool, and we're ... You can’t get rid of me! Say hello! Good morning! Everyone is still a little bit tired,   but we should be so relaxed. I am very relaxed.

So, there it is, Mount Ararat, that’s a big one,  and not just physically. On most days of the year one can see it from the living room of the flat I grew up in. Its peak is just about 50 kms from my birthplace Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, but it’s the first time I see it from this side.

It is a snow-capped and dormant compound volcano in the extreme east of modern day Turkey and consists of two major volcanic cones: Greater Ararat and Little Ararat. Today the greater one is the highest peak  in Turkey with an elevation of 5,137 m. You might even recognize its name from somewhere… In the Genesis, the “mountains of Ararat” are the region in which Noah's Ark comes to rest after the Great Flood.

If you believe it or not. You can hire a driver in Dogubayazit and visit the spot where they found the ark. We don’t, so we didn’t. Ararat also corresponds to the  ancient Assyrian term Urartu, an exonym for the iron age  Armenian Kingdom of Van. Or, probably more likely, you just like drinking cognac. I’m sorry, brandy! Thanks for nothing France! Anyhow, the image of Ararat is ubiquitous in everyday culture in Armenia for many reasons. Like the Italian traveller and diplomat  Luigi Villari once fittingly put it:   "Almost the whole history of the Armenian  people centres around Mount Ararat." 

Apart from settling the lands around it for millenia, there is historical and modern worship around it, as it was principal to the pre-Christian Armenian mythology, where it was the home of the gods. Unfortunately in the aftermath of the genocide, Ararat also came to represent the destruction of the native Armenian population of eastern Turkey or Western Armenia in the national consciousness of Armenians. Hello! Hello! Money, money, money, money, money, … Money, money, money, money, money, … No money. Money, money, money, money, money, … Bro! Money, money. Money, money. This is so saddening to see and not just because these kids never got a fair chance.

Since Diyarbakir we travelled through regions that are,  at least since 1917, all predominantly Kurdish. The 9 provinces with the lowest GDP per capita, out of the total of 81 provinces of Turkey, all have a clear Kurdish majority population.  Since the 1920s, Kurds and Alevis replaced Armenians as the perceived internal enemy of the Turkish state facing harsh repressions ever since. I can’t put into words how much this upsets me. Over a million Armenians were massacred,  

forced out of their homes and into the deserts, being robbed, raped and murdered on the way, or at best, like some women and children, forcefully converted  to Islam and integrated into Kurdish families,   deprived of their names, their identity  and this is how people live here today! I'm Omer. Omer! Very nice to meet you, Omer. As Turkey's border with Armenia remains closed, we now have to turn north towards Georgia. Despite being so near, my hometown Yerevan is still at least 550 kms away. This landscape is so beautiful. So exceptional! Wow! We’re glad that Dani shares this time with us.

He helps us reflect our feelings, and to think of other things, like enjoying the awe-inspiring beauty of the landscape. The computer has been in the shade for the last 15 minutes of climbing this road. It still says 38 degrees. It puts an enormous stress on the body. We’re having a little trouble with the wind. I hope we can stay the night around here somewhere, because it is impossible to  continue with the bicycle. We just got a cucumber each. That was really nice!

Luckily we can stay here behind the gas station. We bought some water, and some lemonades. We’re all pretty beaten up.

Dani just said "it was a very easy day", right? Hardest day I’ve ever had! Brutal! Yes, we're done! So, we'll just put the tents somewhere in the wind shadow, and try to rest as much as we can. Tomorrow… Tomorrow is tomorrow! See ya! Hello!  After some exhausting days on the road, Dani even suffered a heat stroke, we reach Ani.  We visited many UNESCO world heritage sites on our journey so far, also in Turkey, but this one has a special significance for me as an Armenian. Between 961 and 1045 AD, Ani was the capital of the Bagratid Armenian kingdom that covered much of present-day Armenia and eastern Turkey. During that time, Ani was one of the world's largest cities, with an estimated population of about 100,000. The iconic city was often referred to as the "City of 1,001 Churches," To date, 50 churches, 33 cave chapels and 20 chapels have been excavated.

Among its most notable buildings was the Cathedral of Ani, which influenced the great cathedrals of Europe in the early gothic and Romanesque styles. It's no surprise that Ani is a widely recognized cultural,  religious, and national symbol for Armenians. I’m very very sad actually. I don’t even know what to say.

This is such an... important and huge cultural heritage. A part of us would have loved not to see this,   as it is an unfortunate reminder of  Turkey's stance towards its past.

Turkey perceives open discussion of the  genocide as a threat to national security, because of its connection with the foundation of  the republic, and for decades strictly censored it. Turkey's century-long effort to prevent any recognition or mention of the genocide in foreign countries, has included millions of dollars in  lobbying, as well as intimidation and threats. As of 2023, 34 countries, like most of Europe and the Americas, have recognized the genocide, along with Pope Francis and the EU Parliament.

Only Turkey, Azerbaijan and Pakistan explicitly deny it. "This monument was built for the remembrance of the Turks slaughtered in 1918 by the Armenians in this village" Well, actually I can’t argue against what is written on this monument on the road between Kars and Ani. I know that in 1918 some atrocities were committed by Armenians in retaliation.

It is however a little upsetting to see this monument, with English inscription, clearly aimed at tourists visiting Ani. While it is certainly no excuse, the mass-murder of innocent people will usually lead to hatred and more spilled blood. I, as an Armenian, would love to put this to the past and leave it there, once and for all, but with Turkey trying to wipe this part of history from the face of the earth, I’m not sure I can just yet.

*groans* I want some ice-cream too. We spent two days in Kars, feeling a bit paralysed. Some houses in the old town still reminded us of streets in Armenia. It really was time for us to head on after  nearly 3 months in Turkey. It’s 110 kms to the border with Georgia. On the way we pass by lake Cildir, where we spent a beautiful last evening with Dani the Danish, whose presence really helped to cheer us up the past weeks.

I feel a lot better now. Oh look, grilled meat, watermelon. There is this very nice man with his family. He was born in the village on the other side of the lake. He immediately offered us some food, which is amazing. Also Dani is vegetarian and Arev doesn’t like lamb meat.

So I guess most of it is for me. I’m gonna eat all the watermelon.  Right! So, hands off the watermelon! So we will go that way, towards Georgia,  which we’ll reach today.

He’s gonna head into the mountains behind that building. It was a great time. Not so many tears, I don’t have any wipes. Danny all the best! You too! Bye! He’s a great guy! Yes! So, we'll do some shopping to spend our lastTurkish Lira, and then hit the road. It’s only 20 kms to the border. Yeah, it was not always easy mentally. I mean we talked about this.

It was a very interesting time. We learned so much about Turkey and its people. We’re glad we came, but it’s time for a change.

And that change is behind that mountain top there. We want to thank you for making it almost to the end, despite the difficult topic of this episode of our Amazing World Bike Tour. Please don’t get us wrong. Overall Turkey really is an amazing country. The vast majority of the people we met on the road showed us nothing but kindness and hospitality, for which we are incredibly thankful. It's full of beautiful landscapes and history and we really think  it is a great country for bicycle touring in general.  Chances are, if you’re not Armenian,  little of what was hard for me might bother you.

Hey there, it seems you enjoyed our  video, so why not hit the thumbs up? It makes a huge difference for us  to get noticed by a bigger audience. We use as much time as we can to work on our videos, but it's impossible for us to do on the road. If you can spare some money to help us show the world as we see it, that’s great.

If not, there is more you can do: like sharing our content with other people that might get something out of it. Thank you so much for watching! Until next time! We are in Georgia! And may the wind be in your back! What was “hello” in Georgian? Gamarjoba! Gamarjoba!

2023-12-13 14:09

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