In some ways it's hard to believe what we've managed to accomplish in such a short period of time, and in other ways it feels like months, not weeks since we set off on our epic journey.
Then I remind myself that the easy part is over, and now the hard stuff starts.
After our luxurious stay at our swank hotel having braved the hectic traffic getting into Istanbul, we decided to leave the city behind us, and head South. Way off course again, but Peter's father recommended we visit the Pumukkale National Park, which looked amazing. We pulled a grueling 570km yesterday to get there late into the night, but it was well worth it.
The natural mineral baths are formed over thousands of years, and the icing on the cake are the ruins of a Roman city dating back to 190AD. I had a swim in the ancient pool, which is filled with Roman columns which fell into it during an earthquake.
I would upload the wiki link as it's a really interesting read, but for some reason wiki is blocked in Turkey.
The only damper on the day is when Peter slipped and fell into a pool. In an effort to save his camera – and a fairly impressive somersault side flip turn around maneuver- he soaked his phone which is currently dead. We will seek emergency medical attention as soon as we can.
Peter is also now looking after our Instagram
account, and will upload some of his amazing pictures (taken with rescued camera) in due course, so be sure to follow us on Insta.
After our discoveries, we hopped back on the bikes and managed another 300kms to our current location, Aksehir. We are aiming for Goreme tomorrow, and the Black Sea coast thereafter as we meander our way towards Georgia and Armenia where we have received several reports of the roads being horrendous. A French touring biker who is staying at our hotel told us he actually turned around (on his fancy BMW) because they were so bad, so we will have to see what comes, and how the posties fare.
So far, the posties are going really well. Peter is doing regular oil changes and checks the chain oil every morning before we set off. We stop every 200kms or so for fuel (they have tiny 4l tanks and we get about 50km/l) which is good as we also get to stretch our legs and have a drink or an ice cream. My butt has been killing me, which is surprising as I didn't struggle at all during our Tassy Test Trip. At our last petrol stop today, I decided to remove the sheep skin cover, to see if this was the problem, because it's the only thing that's changed since Tassy. The relief was instantaneous. The cover must be past it's sell-by date (it came with the bike on auction), so in the bin it goes. Can't believe I've suffered for nearly 5,000km! But now my aching butt can make a recovery, and rather find the problem after 5,000 than 15,000kms!
Other than that, we push on. We have ingested insects of various nationalities (we are like the UN in that regard, no discrimination), been run off the road by busses and trucks, invited to drink Chai with the petrol attendants and are stopped wherever we go by people wanting to hear our story.
We follow the other Ralliers as they progress, laugh and commiserate with them as they face and overcome their own challenges.
We simply cannot wait to see what is next in store, and thank each and every one of you for joining us on this journey.