“Adventure is a path. Real adventure – self-determined, self-motivated, often risky – forces you to have firsthand encounters with the world. The world the way it is, not the way you imagine it. Your body will collide with the earth and you will bear witness. In this way you will be compelled to grapple with the limitless kindness and bottomless cruelty of humankind – and perhaps realize that you yourself are capable of both. This will change you. Nothing will ever again be black-and-white.” –Mark Jenkins

Monday, 28 September 2009

Day 141 - 22nd September, Tuesday. Last day in Turkey.

A very long, but amusing day! We left the campsite at 11:30am and although the ticket office was only 5 mins drive away, it still took us until 1:15pm (and £120) to have the tickets in our hands. We had a wander around town for a bit before heading down to the port where our ferry was supposed to be leaving at midnight. We had a lot of time to kill, but thankfully Tom and Pat were also down at the port and we were soon joined by Germans, Uli and Ulrika, in their Green custom made 4x4 mobile home/tank. We spent the afternoon and early evening drinking chatting and giggling about the absurdity of the situation, not knowing it was only the beginning. The first gates opened about 7:30pm (right in the middle of Tom cooking his fish supper) and we were able to get our passports checked and pay some port tax to leave Turkey, simple. Onto the next set of gates to park. Then we queued to get our passports stamped –fairly easy, and we thought we were all done, until Ulrika wandered over and informed us we had to get some vehicle papers checked too at customs, and that’s where it all got a bit confusing, in fact I’m not sure I can even remember the hoops we had to jump through or what order we jumped in order to get Bee onto the boat, but what I can tell is that it involved a lot of queuing, a lot of paperwork, a vehicle inspection by a bloke in jeans and T’shirt, a very important handwritten slip of paper (which became known as ‘the lottery ticket’) and 4½ hours of to-ing and fro-ing. We eventually boarded the ‘Mersin’ and were told to get out of the vehicle and off the boat. Nothing else. People started wandering back to the port (in the pitch black) rightly assuming they were getting on another boat the ‘Calypso’. We were not impressed at all and spoke with the captain of the boat who told us it was forbidden to remain in your vehicle, but go ahead and don’t tell anyone. So we climbed inside the back of Pat and Tom’s mobile home which was still waiting to board and got back into Bee and went straight to sleep - starving. It was about 1am and we were still at the docks, I have no idea what time the boat left.

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