Back in Turkey (Europe has me back...)

..even if eastern Turkey is not exactly Europe, after Iran, it just feels like Europe, with again smiling people on the streets, no black woman (headscarfs are quite usual here, but coloured).

The border crossing was funny, the Iranians had no interest in me, the offıcer (a woman) watched my passport and calculate the date between entry and exıt and understood that my visa was not long enough, and several times I told her 'Esfahan visa' because just by turning the page of the passport, she would see my vısa extension. But she did not listen to me and called a colleague, who turned the page, and then it was ok, and no luggage control on the Iranıian side (so the watermelon seeds stay with me :-) ). The Turkish wanted to make a luggage control with my backpack, but I watched the young offıcer a littlebit like 'I don't understand why I should let control my luggage'. Another officer noticed it, asked my natıonality and the 'German' just was enough to let him tell his younger colleague that it is not necessary to open my luggage. Then maybe 10 minutes waıt at the Turkish police control (it was lunch break...) and again no problems, and I was back in Turkey.

The minibus to the next Turkish cıty had to stop and soldiers controled all passports and luggage of the Iranıan man being in this bus with me, but they didn't seem to be interested in me at all. No passport, no luggage check.

In the lıttle Turkish border town I had to wait for a bus to Van, and the bus dıdn't fill up.... but finally the driver decided just to start the travel and not to wait for other passengers. Until departure time, they gave me lots of tea and the Kurdısh young boys had fun with me, because I bought some delıcıous bred from one and I think I have hım the double price, so all the boys wanted to sell somethıng for the double prıce. Most of them sell cıgarettes so I was happy, it is easy to say 'I don't smoke' and they understood this. And when there were too many of them, the bus company told them to go away and only those who dıd not ask all the time if I want to give money were allowed to stay and I took their photos what they really like a lot out there in this area where very seldom a european traveller will wait for a bus. And I gave them the cookies I collected in teh Iranian buses. The boys were really hungry. I asked one of them, he has 5 brothers and sısters. And a man from the bus company even told somtehıng about 10 brothers and sisters.

My hotel ın Van seems ok and one of the hotel men helped me and phoned the famıly ın Bıtlıs for me. I met them when I was last time in Van and promised them to visit them on my way back. They are at home, so I go there tomorrow ( and meet their seven children!!!) and probably you get news again only from Kayseri, ın around 3 or 4 days, because the little village next to Bitlis will certainly not have Internet. It is not exactly Europe here...

Best wishes to you all from Turkey,


8.9.07 20:18


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Ivan / Website (17.10.07 23:28)

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