Saturday, October 29, 2011

Day 156 - Kusadasi and Pigeon Island

I decided to stay one more full day in Kusadasi instead of painstakingly planning my next destination, whether it be Bodrum or Fethiye. Just like some of the days in my college years, nobody woke up until around noon, missing some classes that started earlier in the day. In fact, a couple of the girls ended up not going to class at all today, opting to play hooky to tour me around their city.

We walked around the city in the afternoon after the skies cleared and the warmth from the sun filled the air. There was a small island off the coast that we visited called Pigeon Island, which some call the symbol of Kusadasi. On the island lies the Byzantine Castle, which was used to protect the city from attacks from the sea.

The day was short, since we left the house around 3pm, and after our visit to the castle, we had dinner at one of the seaside restaurants. I ordered Balik Ekmek (Fish Sandwich) with Salgam Suyu (Turnip Juice). The sandwich was good, but the drink was too salty for my taste, although it is a popular drink to accompany any seafood meal. Afterwards, we headed to a tea shop popular with the university crowd, where we smoked Nargile (water pipe), drank tea, and played some Backgammon. The game is probably the most popular board game in Turkey, and I felt so slow when I played against Elif. She knew exactly where to place each piece whenever she moved, where I had to take my time counting the number of spaces to move based on my dice rolls. I learned a couple more strategies to take when playing though, things I never even considered when I played the game when I was younger.

At the end of the night, I decided I would head to Fethiye the next morning since I was running out of time and everyone told me I should try and get to Eastern Turkey to see some of the more "Middle Eastern" culture of Turkey.

Byzantine Castle on Pigeon Island

Helping Make Breakfast!

A Tense Game of Backgammon with 20 Lira on the Line

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