Some Excellent Adventures

Little kids are cool beacuse they are unjaded by the world and ask questions that adults don’t know the answers to but never ask because they’ve been around too long to stop wondering about this wonderful world. Traveling makes you feel like a kid again, seeing and experiencing things you never fathomed existed. Especially in Turkey.

Seeking adventure as usual, I decided to hike a total of 16 km in the middle of the night to the Chimera flames in Olympos on the South coast of Turkey, to see the everburning flames in the dark. I found some like-minded Germans (of course) and an American (surprise!) to make the trek with me. We started at 11 at night, reaching Mt. Olympos at 1 am, greeted by heaps of flames that only mythology can explain- really, there is no explanation as to why nothing can put these flames out. Scientists still can’t figure out their exact make up. I hope they never do. Sitting in the peace and quiet under a blanket of stars, staring at these mysterious flames was pure magic. I felt like a kid again, totally in awe, soaking in my surroudings without searching for sense making and logic. I pulled myself away after an hour and made it back to the safety of my treehouse in the woods at 4 am.

An unsuccessful attempt at capturing the brilliant flames (about 20-30 in all) at around 2 am. Don't trust this picture.

An unsuccessful attempt at capturing the brilliant flames (about 20-30 in all) at around 2 am. Don't trust this picture.

I continued my Turkey adventure with the American, Ricky, the most unlikely suspect. I’ve commented several times about how I never find American travelers. Especially not ones from the Bible belt. Will Ricky is a real corn fed, Christ-loving, All-American football player frat boy from Oklahoma, the most conservative state in America. I had to push all stereotypes, judgements and pre-conceptions aside. He totally surprised me- which I loved- perhaps because I love surprising people as well- and we bonded over chess, playing piano since the days of diapers, calculus, independent travel, and the Dudley Moore film “Arthur”. He was a wonderful travel companion.

We had an epic week in Cappadoccia, moped-ing around the vast Star Wars landscape, hiking into the huge caves in the deep valleys, and riding a hot air balloon above the striking scenery. These pictures just won’t do any of it justice:

Goreme

Goreme

In front of the phallic fairy chimneys

In front of the phallic fairy chimneys

Selime Monastery. Allegedly Star Wars was filmed here.

Selime Monastery. Allegedly Star Wars was filmed here.

Ramadan started August 22 and it's a big deal in this 98% Muslim country. I'm sure I'll be blogging about my experiences in East Turkey during Ramadan soon.

Ramadan started August 22 and it's a big deal in this 98% Muslim country. I'm sure I'll be blogging about my experiences in East Turkey during Ramadan soon.

Sunrise from the hot air balloon

Sunrise from the hot air balloon

Cecilia 012

Ricky and me and our temporary adpoted little brother we found in Olympus, Farid, a 19-year-old who had never left home.

Ricky and me and our temporary adpoted little brother we found in Olympus, Farid, a 19-year-old who had never left home.

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~ by ceciliabien on August 29, 2009.

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