Sunday, October 12, 2008

We're Here!

At Gallipoli and James on the beach at ANZAC Cove (beached as bru!!)

Kerrie at Hagia Sophia

Well after a week of travelling we are finally able to post - somehow our blog got blocked but now it's fine again.
We arrived in Istanbul last Sunday night after a very long 30 odd hours of travelling - 8 hour stop over in Dubai and a loooong flight from Brisabane to Dubai. Arriving in Istanbul at night was interesting and as our driver took us past the Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque and other icons I could hardly believe we were there. Istanbul is busy, huge, crazy with traffic, friendly and has loads of cats! I've had my hand kissed three times (just for buying kebabs!) and received one marriage proposal!!! James also received the traditional Turkish greeting practised by men with a hand shake and a kiss on each cheek - not sure how he felt about that but he received it graciously!
Our tour down to Gallipoli and Cannakale was wonderful. We toured the Gallipoli peninsula with an English speaking guide who had incredible knowledge of the WW1 campaign and really brought it to life. Standing at ANZAC Cove was very special and brought tears to my eyes as we thought of all the lives lost there.We crossed the Dardenelles on a car ferry to Cannakale just as the sun was setting - spectacular.
On our second day we toured Troy with Mustafa - another very informative guide who also spoke excellent English. Pretty amazing to see such history.
In Istanbul we visited the Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Underground Cistern, Topkapi Palace, Grand Bazaar, Spice Market and lots of smaller streets and shops. The people were always very friendly, helpful and interested in where we came from - lots of comments about kangaroos, Sydney, oi oi oi!, and g'day mate!!!
Today we arrived in Sofia, Bulgaria after a long overnight train trip with two extended stops for passport control in the middle of the night. The train station here is an unpleasant concrete bunker which appears to be out in the middle of nowhere. When I enquired about our overnight trip to Budapest I was told by the lady at international booking that it was not possible during the week - oh bugger. It seems we have to change at Belgrade so we will set off tomorrow in case the trains don't connect and we lose a night along the way. After being fleeced by the taxi driver from the train station to the hostel (even though I thought I had good information about them) I'm thinking Sofia is not going to be our favourite spot - maybe some sight seeing tomorrow before we leave might fix that.
We were hoping to post a photo but unfortunately the computers here down have USB ports - maybe at our next stop. Take care everyone - oh and happy back to work tomorrow - we'll be thinking of you!!!
Happy Birthday Jas for Monday - love you heaps and kisses for my babies xxx. Have a good day with Nanna and give her a big kiss from us.
Kerrie & James

No comments: