Across Continents

Ken's Blog

Coastal run

You could almost taste it. Carried in on the strong offshore wind. Salt. Then a tantalizing glint of weak winter sun. The Sea of Marmara. Bunting adorning a nearby petrol station flapped noisily like loose halyards. At last. I continued along the D-100, the route I’d followed across much of Turkey towards Istanbul. By now a busy dual carriage way, a generous hard shoulder making it bearable. Winding along the urban coastal belt, pastel coloured apartment blocks, inter-spaced with modern industrial units. Steady uphills, long sweeping descents.

I stopped for the night in Buyukcekmece. Probably. Difficult to say exactly amidst the coast sprawl. But certainly close enough to give me a short run into the city centre the next day. Forty, perhaps fifty, kilometres. Ample time to find somewhere cheap and secure to stay. In the meantime I’d found a small but respectable looking place for the night. Owner a jovial chap. They’d been a little bartering over the price, especially as I’d have to wait a couple of hours for a room. But that was ok. Plenty of warm cay to drink as I sat watching young couples come and go.

Later, over dinner in the little cafe opposite, a few students for company, I mulled over the final leg into Istanbul. A decent city map would have been useful, but that was the sort of thing you usually found when you’d already made it in. Instead, I’d have to rely on a map that showed the entire country on a single sheet. And keep a sharp lookout for road signs that said senir merkezi – city centre. I’d hunt out the only landmark I knew of, the Blue Mosque. Thought there’d be plenty of hostels close by. City with a population of about eight million. Seemed like a sound plan.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Terms & Conditions of Use | Copyright © 2009-2024 Ken Roberts