August 22, 2004 GMT
Get your Rocks Off......

In the words of the famous song from Robbie Williams - Get your rocks off honey... as chris says we have been lookings at a lot of piles of rocks lately - Isttanbul was an early start , arnt they all ? off to Ankara - as mentioned before its not the most inpiring city in the world.... One day in, overnight, look at Mustafa Kamals place and leave.... to Cappadocia, Nemrut and now here - Diyarbikir

tc14.jpg The tag line on my registration plate says BMW Park Lane, on Chris'S it says BMW Export - the difference is obvious!

Ther ride was excellent, really it was, Big Sky Country, lots of horizon, lots of Marlborough Ad scenery, lots of space...

Starting with Mustafas place... Aziz Mustafa Kamel - the founder of modern Turkey..
- not many people get to make an entire country from scratch, some - Mr Bush are able to put a country back to scratch! in short he led the Turkish fight for freedom from the Ottoman Empire, the British and French interests, the Greeks, just about every one who fancied a Kepab... It may sound romantic to have a Caliph or a Sultan but try living under the Whims of one man! He developed a bit of a personality cult, still he is on all the bank notes - you got to see his photo - the eyebrows!! soon it will be here, and when you see it remember the Adams Family - the movie

Aziz Mustafah Kamel AKA Attaturk

One of his reforms was the names reform - until then as a Turk you could only use your fathers name or the place of your birth as a family name - confused? imagine how many Ali Istanbuls there must have been, or Mohamed Marmaris's - He became Atturturk - Father of Turkey - and the sniggering about his name (I really need a Camel a Marlborough just wont do!) came to an end

Gaurding Mustaffahs Mausoleum - It must be an emotional experiance - dig the dribble gaurd on the chin strap! click here for a better image ..and here for another image

Goreme in Capadoccia - click here for an image Backpacker ghetto with lots of rock formations , great walking, Chris is really beginning to excercise that soft Office Wallah fat off of me - Hi Jan, lean and mean and......

An Hours walk brings you to a hole in the rock face..inside carved by hand are the most awesome ancient churches.. 6th or 7th century image image

Why Walk in when you can ride? Cappadoccia Canyons

Nemrut Dagi - a mountain with ancient carved heads atop it representing the Gods...It was here that Rodders really earnt his GS badge image
- A GS is an off road type bike that Chris rides, I use the road going version - same engine different frame and wheels - Its was a steep rough climb to the top, and what a pile of rock they were! Rodders had his 92 nd birthday too... image image

There was a delicious moment on the way, we are just about all packed on the bikes, the two of us stand there next to the bikes, its a boys moment of communication, ie. nothing is said... from some where I mention that this jacket of mine is getting very dirty,

'So What' he says

'I guess it is designed for this kind of use' I venture

He glares - Chris can glare like no other, its not malicious, it is more, 'dont be so stupid'

' The bikes filthy as well'. As soon as I have the words out I regret saying them


'OK and I bet it invalidates the warrenty too' - I can imagine the scene.. 'I am sorry' the man in the nice suit with a BMW tie says 'that bike is way too filthy to be underwarrenty, dont you know it is compulsory to clean it every time it is used?'

I look at the small whiff of smoke from the gearbox oil on Chris's exhaust ' Aaagh, smell that engineering' he laughs, we leave....

Where else in Turkey would three cops on motorcyles stop to talk and help just simply because you all ride the same B M W ? Its the day after the news of my twin and we are back in Diyarbakir, Chris's bike wont start again - no electics at all - as he fiddles with switches they pull up and set too - in the UK they would pull up and write a ticket for being parked in the wrong place! We go into a serious technical mine session with about 3 words of Turkish and two English.. the upshot is that a loose battery terminal is secured and we are invited for Tea, no charge of course - the Turkish People are truely wonderful

Diyarbikir - got a bloody big old Roman wall around the outside and two fustrated English men inside ( that kind as well Jan) - we are working out options to get back for My Twins Funeral , if only there was a customs office in town as the bikes are bonded to our passports, we cant fly out without exporting the bikes first - we are waiting a reply from Iran, it looks like our options are to make a long long ride to Istanbul, aurgue like hell with Turkish Customs and fly back temporarily, or make an even longer ride to Greece, which being in the EU will have no Customs probs, but getting a flight during the Olympics?? Or go to Tehran - this is favourite, it is closer, we can leave the bikes there under a Carnet and flights look cheap - All we would need is a new visa to go back and get them again. the last Iran Visa took 60 plus days to get!!!!!

Its the challenges in life that make you what you are - is your biggest challenge setting the video for your favourite soap opera?

Posted by Richard Stone at August 22, 2004 09:27 AM GMT


An idea - you can import a bike into Turkey on a Carnet. So in theory you might be able to get to a customs office, get them to sign off the bike from your passport / funny Turkish registration document, and onto your carnet.


Posted by: Simon and Georgie McCarthy on August 23, 2004 02:38 PM GMT
Sorry, due to heavy form spamming, Comments are OFF.

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