Day 6: The Ruins of Old

The morning had to reveal something better about the hotel so I decided to check out the balcony. I turned the knob and it fell to the ground.

Whatever.

Breakfast was almost as horrible as the room. Tomatoes, one boiled egg, cucumbers, old sesame bread, and some bread that loked stale, jam and butter. i jsut had the jam, butter, and stale bread. Packed up, left the stuff in the office and indicated to the guy that I was ready to head out. The guy says “What?”. I said, “Let’s goto Ephesus, your boss said you’d take me.”

He had no clue and instead told me to goto the bus station and catch a ride there. Annoying.

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Urkmez Hotel Room. Bed had hairs on it. Ew.

I dropped my bags in the office and figured I’d get a scooter and drive myself around instead. It was only 35 liras for 24 hours, and he wouldn’t haggle with me. I decided instead to get on a bus for 3 liras and head out to the ruins. The mini-bus driver ends up dropping me off on the side of the road and points towards a sign that says : “Ephesus 1km”.

Note to all: No bus is allowed to get you to Ephesus. They take you 1km outside of it and drop you by the side of the road where you have to hail a taxi to take you on the rest of your ‘journey’.

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Elderly gentleman posed for this picture. Cool bicycle.

I found one taxi and he showed me a map and offered the full tour for 50 liras. After I got him down to 35 liras I walked off to get him to go down more. He finally agreed to 30 liras, but by then I decided I’d rather walk back to town and grab a scooter for 35 liras instead of pay a crazy amount for the full day.

The walk was uneventful, but getting on that scooter and feeling the wind and sense of independence… that was well worth it.

Lunch was only 3 liras, and the sandwich was ginormous. I took a movie of him make the lunch, but forgot to take a picture. The sandwich is made out of beef, salami, fried egg, pickles, some lettuce, something else and something else on french bread. DELICIOUS!

On the way to Ephesus, I saw a sign for the “Seven Sleepers Cave”. For the Muslims, this is a pretty significant area. In our tradition, there was a group of people called Ahl ul-Kahf, or the people of the cave. Supposedly this is where they were, and the Christians had built a church on to of their cave. It was fun exploring it. One of the best aspects of going during the low season to any country is that there are barely any tourists to ruin your experience and you can do pretty mcuh anything. ?

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Me and the sign.

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One portion of church. Wasn’t clear where they believed the cave of Ahl ul-Kaaf was.

Yeah, that won’t stop me. I don’t ever endorse doing anything which would violate a country’s laws, but the view is so much better after you cross the barbwire… so why not? After crossing the barbwire, I hiked all the way to the top and the view was well worht it. I saw the ruins, the whole city, mosque’s, mountain ranges, and a castle. A castly? Where’d that come from?

After the hike, I got on the scooter and road to Ephesus. The city itself closed in two hours, so I had to do the whole thing fast.

It was beautiful, it was ancient, and it humbled me. These people who created such magnificent and beautiful structures… where are these people today? What happened to them? For this city, it was a gigantic earthquake and several wars which caused them to migrate or pass away. All this the people built, and look how they were destoryed.

A pity.

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The Theater. Where Gladiators came to die. Seats about 25,000 people. ENORMOUS.

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After the ruins, I hunted down an awesome hotel, went back to the old one, packed ALL my luggage on to the scooter, and headed to my new place. It was only 10 liras more (45 liras), and it was well worth it. Went to a restaurant, had a great discussion on Islam with the owners, and headed back. Food was GREAT.

My room was nice and warm, big, and ultra cozy. I ended up spending the night here instead of catching a night bus to Pamukalle. I’ll read the scooter some more tomorrow and check out the castle as well!

Tomorrow: the castle, more scooter riding just for fun, more sandwiches, then the otogart for Pamukalle.

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