Friday, 16 September 2011


Well this is the final leg of the Turkish experience and all in all I had a great time cycling through this place, lots of photos now, new friends and many memories that will serve me to the end of my days and beyond.

Turkey there were many great places to camp, always water easy to find from sources, piknik areas at the side of the roads and plenty of petrol stations with water and toilets, a very easy country to travel, people were really easy to get on with, friendly, helpful and generous.

Bling Bling pink fluffy thing...
 My spongy seat had slowly become so compacted and eaten away I think from my spicy acid, toxic sweat, that I was imagining to find something outrageous to replace it with so I spent some time thinking about this whilst cycling, I went through various senarios which were great to pass some of the boring parts of the road, purple, pink, fluffy, real bear fur......then what do you know I found a piece just exactly the right size and shape and equally as outrageous as I had imagined......I was hoping to use this as some sort of blackmail maybe Azub would cringe so much they would send me a new one? but in the end I could not live with myself, amusing for 24 hours then decided my bike was not looking proud about itself and had served me so well I should not pimp it up like some cheap hooker.

Chai time evening in the Piknik area



Lechu.......from Argentina, we met at the Iran consulate and cycled together from here a few days towards the border, really great character a natural traveller....wish you well my friend, keep going and smile all the way.

Always great hospitality, friendly invitaions to drink tea, eat fruit.

great priorities, make sure you carry a big musical instrument and leave your tent behind....raaarrr!

Make sure you carry everything...6 bags!

Less is more, or sometimes more is more?

Amigo, friend, mon ami, we go different direction but always travelled with spirits akin.....

No Photoshop here, just pure majik of the moment, really a special night with nature.

Robert on his way to India

Hot long roads

Huge huge line of trucks waiting to enter Iran, maybe 12km.

Really proud of this, it took many many attempts with my new friend Lechu, to get it almost perfect and felt it was a great joint tribute to both of our experiences through Turkey, so thank you to these people and mother nature for these great moments in her gorgeous garden.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011


 Visa time for Iran.....

Currently in Ezurum. I just got back from the Iran consulate today after they tried to refuse my application straight away for not having a reference number and or invite. Which I knew couldbe a problem but as I told them I am travelling by bike, now over 8,000km and very difficult to plan these things in advance, as too many things can and do change along the way. With this information they seemed very sympathetic, there was along pause and then I was told to come back first thing in the morning and they would contact the embassy and try to help me, so I am still a bit nervous, but hoping the travelling Gods will be with me tomorrow......

you will never catch me on my bike...or

....or on foot, because..
...Your just too dimentional.

...On their way to India
3,900m time for a little detour.

...Hmmmm further than it looks!

3,700m the top was just a bit knarly, but very happy to reached here to be rewarded with such peace and amazing panorama.

A cold night at 2,200m 6 degrees,it felt like -16

......fingers crossed for Iran


Diet, new food discovery


Paneer cheese, Tahin, molasses syrup, pomegranate concentrate syrup, hot fermented carrot juice.

Breakfast....boil water with raisins, dried fruits, sugar, add Bulgar, chopped bananas, leave in closed container for 5minutes to 'congeal'

For a twist I have added, tahin (sesame paste), molasses, when added to the above is just unbelievably sweet, rich, addictive....ooooh chopped nuts would be great as well and a dollop of clotted cream on top.....damn this appetite.

Lunch...a great way to use old bread. Chop tomatoes, garlic, onion, fresh chillies, fry in olive oil, add 2 eggs, curry powder. Remove into another bowl then in same pan add more olive oil, break/cut up old bread, and make a layer on bottom, (add a bit of paneer cheese on top of bread if have) pour on top the curry mixture and cook a few minutes, break goes crispy on the bottom, cheese melts into bread with olive oil and curry soaks in....its really really rich and good.

Salad dressing

Garlic, salt, pomegranate concentrate, hot spicy fermented carrot juice concentrate (never ever seen anything like that before and its great)

Saturday, 3 September 2011


Ankara - Bala 72km
Bala - Kaman 93km
Kaman - Kargin 87km.....night with the Nomads
Kargin - Goreme 67km......Amazing area geology, caves, architecture, culture
Goreme - Mustafapasa 34km

Morning tea with the gypsies in the quantum field of pure potential.
Towards the end of each day, or when my body tells me its reserves are approaching empty. I switch over the channels in my brain, that are constantly flicking from channel to channel, either shopping for food, digging up things from the past, thinking about the future, fantasizing about all the beautiful girls in the world, and sometimes completely nothing, loss of signal, pure peace and maybe that is where the hours, days, weeks, months can pass by so easily.

This last hour of the day I switch over and dedicate all channels into finding the perfect place for the night, discrete, away from road noise, river, lake, ocean or running water of any kind is always a treat. I would say 98 percent of the time within this hour this perfect place suddenly appears, out of all the different locations at that particular time of the evening, I seem to get lucky, or these travelling Gods are with me! It is like what they describe in some quantum theory that if you look for it, it will become, it will suddenly exist, a thought is like a seed placed in the fertile field of pure quantum potential, and grows to full flower with the strength of your will.

This day I saw the water, a stream, a tap, trees, flat grassy ground next to the stream surrounded by trees, just far enough away from the road and perfectly at the right time of the day to do a few things, cook in daylight, strip down my bike and check it all over.

There were already a few people who had also seen the potential of this place and had made a few temporary houses, from plastic sheets bits and pieces, clothes were drying on a line, but no one around.
I was hoping to introduce myself and let let them know I was hoping to stay the night here, looking forward to meeting some of these nomadic, gypsies that everyone keeps telling me to stay away from, ”they will cut your throat, shrink you and steal your tears”

I set my own camp up in the trees next to the little stream, enjoying yet another great location for the night.

I did get to meet the Gypsies in the end, as I left in the morning I walked past their tent, a whole bunch of them were huddled inside drinking chai and going through their mornings family routine. One of them saw me, I waved and he invited me over, smiling I walked over, happy to have had this chance to meet them and gave them my little routine of who where why and when, so took off my shoes and sat crossed legged inside their little home, drinking chai and eating the biggest chappattis I ever saw, maybe 1 meter diameter that we ate with chilli, so a great breakfast.
I think they were Arabic, they seemed to speaking something like that between themselves, certainly not Turkish, but great people, big smiles, very comfortable atmosphere, no one got shrunk, murdered, raped, stolen, people are just people we are all the same, just the devils in our hearts making such divisions and presumptions most of the time.

Later that day it was approaching lunchtime and I was trying to reach a lake, or something like that which was marked on the map, maybe 5 km away, jut at the point where I was starting to feel really thirsty and needing a little boost to get me there, a melon seller waves at me to stop, handed out the best melon I have ever tasted, I tried not to appear too rude but could not help myself getting stuck into these amazing sweet juicy fruit, as he kept cutting more up amused at the thirst and rate in which they were going down, too good, so after spending a little time with him I set off, fully charged again amazed at the kindness of these people.

I arrived at the lake and was just perfect for lunch, cook some good food, make tea, have my daily wash, a little siesta then head off again. This time there were a few families also doing the same, making big pic nics, so I found a spot for myself, in the shade of the trees. Again everyone is just so friendly, and not just towards me they all the different families were all joining together, sharing food, tea, talking, laughing.

I started cooking my lunch, much to the interest of everyone, I can feel them thinking...” can they cook? What do they eat? And as I got stuck into chopping up food, mixing ingredients, setting up my little stove and the smell and sizzling of cooking got under way, there was almost a silent applause, and an equally silent smugness from me, I did offer my food for them to try, but again they were much more interested in sending over, chappatti's, barbequed peppers, melon, tea...just unbelievable people, andI had a great time with these people also.

Finally the last hour of the day was approaching, and I was thinking wether or not to stop to get a few supplies from the next village that I would go through, juggling with time in my mind and the resources I have left, and finding the perfect camping spot for the night, it was starting to get on into the evening, so I was thinking to skip the shopping, make do with something simple. I decided to do the shopping, as it happens I did find the perfect place again, running water from a tap, just away from the road and a perfect flat ground under some trees, where a bunch of guys had light a fire and were having a barbeque, again I was summoned over and out came the food, tea, friendly exchanges of sign language and smiles, eventually they had to leave and left me with their fire and a whole bag of supplies, that if I new in advance I would not have needed to have done any shopping today. What a day again, I thought to myself as I have been doing most days now, what will happen tomorrow?

Guess where I will be taking my next shower?

and a great shoulder massage, perfect.

friendly taxi drivers, would not let me leave, bought me food and tea so I had to oblige.

Nomadic Gypsies

Lunch time with a Turkish family

Second Nomadic family, I stayed the night with these.

No Tv, cold winter nights, what else is there to do, make children I geuss!

Heading towards Goreme....start to see many of these rocks and houses carved into them.
 This was an area where they had filmed much of the star wars, futuristic alien dessert landscape, not that this place needed many special effects for you to feel you are on another planet. Really amazing place, I climbed everywhere, wating to look in here, then in there, go over here....amazing.

Great view....I'll take it.

....No, No ...I'll have this one its got a climbing wall already made.

Real flinstones meets Fraggle rock stuff

Following a dry river bed, towards some more interesting rock.

...Just add water and things seem to grow very well here.

...Just add water and things seem to grow very well....its just the camera angle you know.

 .....Lots of cave photos, I could not decide which ones to leave out so I put them all in.
Add caption

 ......Phew what a day that was, no time to do any drawings running around trying to photograph every angle, just for some more kilometers to crunch out on the hot road.