Sunday, June 16, 2013

Day 2 - Silivri to Tekirdag (65km)

Though we were up and ready early, pouring rain and thunder storms compelled us to delay our departure. Eventually we lost hope and decided to go anyway, with lowered expectations for the distance today.

While we were packing our bikes to go, Carrie noticed that she had a flat in the front. I noticed that she had some severe tire damage in the back. It was time to see the friends that we made the night before at the bike shop. They were incredibly helpful an generous. And, when we finally hit the road, there was a break in the rain.

Our bike shop friend left us with one google translated message 'Cycling is a way of life, not a hobby'. I couldn't agree more.

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I don't like to say it, but the fact is that it IS different touring as a woman. Sexual harassment (a term that has been used so much and in so many contexts as to render it inadequate to express the severity of its impact) is one of the disadvantages that we face (regardless of the country). It's really a shame; so many men that we have met here in Turkey been extremely warm and friendly.

But, there have been a few exceptions and that's all it takes to start to spoil a moment. There are times when we get a predatory glare or a comment that, although neither of us understands turkish, lead us to feel like we are seen as two travelling prostitutes (which, by the way, would probably be a very successful business down here, based on our experience).

Touring as a woman also has its advantages. Among our experiences today, 1) a car full of women and daughters dressed in burquas shouting and waving at us, and 2) a little girl getting an ice cream, turning around and noticing us and getting her dad to take a photo.

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Everyone asks us where we are from. Sometimes I say Canada, Sometimes Carrie says New Zealand. The problem is that nobody knows where New Zealand is. Nobody. So, sometimes she just says Australia. Or America. It's a pity, considering the thousands of kiwis who defended Turkey during Ottoman rule.

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Carrie went into a store to buy a snack. She emerged with something in each hand (one for me!). It looked like a local dessert of some sort. Or maybe cheese. It was a culinary experiment (which, so far, in Turkey has worked out extremely well. Carrie took a bite. It turned out to be butter. This one didn't work out so well, but we are going to keep trying for adventure.

4 Comments:

Blogger Cindy said...

Hi Ladies,
Are you on the same bikes you used for Tour d'Afrique? I so enjoyed those posts, so am excited to continue reading the updates on this adventure. A fellow Calgary cyclist. Cheers.

June 16, 2013 at 8:07:00 PM MDT  
Blogger Hoop said...

Sounds like an amazing adventure thus far Tori. Please stay safe!

June 17, 2013 at 1:54:00 PM MDT  
Blogger BikingBakke said...

Stay safe, it's interesting when it's all about the personal interactions over the landscapes in what you write, that contrast I guess says something about travelling historic areas.

June 17, 2013 at 9:49:00 PM MDT  
Blogger Unknown said...

Now that Tim has posted your latest adventure, there will be many deadgoats going along with you, in spirit, for the journey. Safe travels Tori!

Henry

June 19, 2013 at 8:44:00 AM MDT  

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