“Most people see the world as a threatening place, and, because they do, the world turns out, indeed, to be a threatening place.”
For the past few days we have been passing through a whole lot of nothingness, up and down through treeless landscapes with an unfortunately strong headwind.
This area, and the eastern part of the country is more rural and less populated than the rest of Turkey, something we have come to greatly appreciate. The houses are smaller and more rustic, and there are cows, sheep, geese, and piles of hay just about everywhere. There are also less large cities, many open areas of nothingness where we can camp, and friendly villagers so, as you may have already guessed, we have loved it so far.
We even passed a few shepherd’s huts! Some of our best nights in India were spent in these. Shepherds tend to be our favorite people in every country, and Turkey is no exception. For one, they are the people we come into contact with the most as they are often brining their animals home through wherever we are camping (woods, fields, by the river…) when we are setting up camp, and are out again when the sunrises as we are packing up. They are always polite and friendly, and here in Turkey, are very curious about our stove, tent, and gear. We have really enjoy showing them how we live since they seem to appreciate it more than most city dwellers, and since we are curious about their nomadic (seasonally nomadic) lives as well. They also never tell us we are crazy, or that it’s dangerous, or too cold, or whatever else people are always telling us because they too spend their whole life outdoors and know perfectly well that it’s just as safe as anywhere. Though it’s frustrating that we can never really talk to them (as they don’t speak English and we don’t speak Turkish) they often still hang out with us for an hour or more as their animals graze, something we have really enjoyed! Kevin and I both agree that if we were to live with a group of people for a month (or year) we would choose nomads or shepherds because they seem to be the people we can connect with the most.
This made my day, an older couple taking their geese for a walk! It seems that every house has a gaggle of these guys squawking out front when we cycle by, though we have yet to see anyone eat one.
A few more beautiful photos from the region.