I am no longer able to determine whether breaking the hook from the pannier just after arriving in Turkey was the beginning of a series of accidents leading the the current stabilization, or whether it has started much earlier.
The hook finally broke off, actually it was a plastic pad holding it that broke, because it was a temporary counterfeit only and as such it had right to happen, especially if it lasts for a long time – much longer than we would have assumed, but it does fail one day. As you might remember the panniers (bike and me too) were hit during an accident in Uzbekistan that is more then a year ago and then they were repaired (I was not). Back in Poland I couldn’t find spare ones, so I risked it would break again. Whoever risks once gains once loses, in this case it was similar, I do not know only in plus or in minus.
While still in Cyprus, I was wondering what to do now – go to Alanya by bike or take a bus and not waste time because I have something to do I need time for. In the vicinity of Alanya, the center of mass tourism in Turkey, a local acquaintance was expecting me as we agreed I’d rent a flat from him. As you may know, or not, I did come to Turkey to spend winter. Poland has dropped out, because nothing deprives me of despair and deprecation more than gloomy days in which the aura of Central Europe abounds at this time of the year, and consequently the inability to ride a bicycle, which is for me both a de-stresser and a comforter because it’s good for the brain, waist size and increases the thickness of the thighs (the latter is hardly desirable). I recommend this first and second to everyone though.
So as you already know how the story and why I bought this one way ticket again, I will return to this broken pannier hook holder. Well, it stopped me at a crucial moment, when after a nice and sleepy night on the ferry I arrived again after a few months on Turkish soil, I collected money from an ATM and I was inclined to get to Alanya, those over 300 km after powerful coastal serpentine by bike, which, with the size of my bicycle gear, the formation of the terrain and the headwind would result in like 5 days on the road for sure, but I hope for the abundance of scenic views was strong. But, as I looked at the pannier I knew it immediately that I am to say good bye to this version of events immediately.
So, waiting for the next rainfall under the tree, because there is now plenty of it, I noticed an office selling tickets for buses. This is a sign! I will take a bus. At the office, I was informed that the bus towards Alanya had just left, and the next one would be in two hours. So I moved to a nearby in search for the internet, informing my future landlord about the unexpected acceleration of arrival time and then I went for the bus. Which arrived packed, because it was New Year’s and did not take me. The driver of the next one was willing to take my bike for the equivalent of 12 EUR without the possibility of negotiating the price, so I thanked him and resigned. C’mon guys, I will pay, I know how it works, that it’s up to the drivers and that it goes to the driver’s pocket, but not that much! People put half of their households to these buses without a fee.
In the meantime, I met a cyclist from Turkey, who was going in the opposite direction, that is Cyprus. We drank teas and chatted. I slept there, in the teacher’s house (Teacher)! He said pointing to a nice new hotel building on the seashore. When you arrive earlier, you have the cheapest rooms, a 35 L to (7 USD). Because it was raining, I was tired, in Cyprus I was sleeping in the tent mostly because it was not cheap there and I did not want to pack in a night bus, I was attracted by warm shower, warm room and sleeping so I deided to stay overnight in this nice ogretmenevi (To be honest, I already knew in the summer that the cheapest accommodation in Turkey is offered by the Teacher’s Houses, but in the summer in all of those I arrived to, were full).
When the morning of the next day started with the pouring rain, I did not want to move to stand on the side of the road again and discuss with bus drivers, I will stay one ore day I thought… My would-be landlord said there’s no problem, then changed his mind a minute later and withdrew his proposal that I would no longer rent this place in Alanya, because I am constantly changing my mind. Overall, understandable.
A bit disappointed, but a bit happy because I like to have freedom in making a choice, which apparently results in unexpected changes, I extended the stay in the teacher’s house already 3 times and for last 2 weeks nearly I’ve been living in a small seaside town Tasucu port, which has the advantage that it is small, but the life in it has not died down because the ferries are arriving and departing to Cyprus, despite several hotels here it’s not a hotel ghetto but a normal town. I have my lokanta, that is eatery I eat every day, the people start to recognize me on the street wondering probably what the hell this woman is doing here. When its a nice, sunny day, I am nagging for my mental balance and stretching my muscles pedalling on the surrounding hills. The prices in Turkey, which I was hoping for, are very pocket-friendly, and although I’m over the budget, it probably was going to be like that and I will not be struggling with it anymore.
Mediterraean region is not always heat and sun as you might have imagined, but it’s still much warmer then the rest of Europe. Winter has arrived in full in Turkey as well, that has experienced unprecedented amounts of snow – that’s main news on Turkish TV – road closures, accidents, landslides and rainfall .. So I stick to the warmer coast, I’ll be stuck here.. I will move on again soon I guess, lead nomadic-stationary life to some point, nothing new about that, not for speed.
Ps. The new hook holder was done by a local craftsmen – how long it will last, who knows?