Saturday, June 5, 2010

We are in very hot sunny Syria  - we sailed here from Turkey having bypassed the port of Iskendurun because of PKK Kurdish independence separatists attacking the Turkish Navy. So we skipped that port! All peaceful here though.
Not entirely sure what will happen in Israel as they recently attacked a Gaza aid convoy and there are some tensions but we will find out when we get there.

There are three NZ boats and one from South Africa ( a couple from Capetown) in our rally fleet of 70. All really nice people.

Even just to use the internet in a little side street cafe like this one we needed to provide our passports so they can record our details. Some of the kiwis went off on their own with a group of Aussies and they didn't take their passports yesterday. They spent a few hours this morning in prison!!!

Today we decided to skip the organised tours and came on our own to the city of Tartus in Southern Syria - off shore there is the only island in Syria, where the locals go for day trips. Lovely narrow windy alleyways, kids everywhere, rubbish everywhere! a traditional boatbuilding yard and an ancient castle.

A couple of days ago we went inland in Turkey and went on a balloon trip over the amazing landscape in Cappadocia. We stayed in a rock cave hotel; rooms carved out of the rock - beautifully cool all year round. We hired a car and drove there; on the way we saw a donkey on the road with its saddle slipped under its belly and hobbling its back legs, so we stopped and took its saddle off - not sure what the owner will think (he was nowhere to be seen) but the donkey was delighted - cantered off to the roadside gravel and had a luxurious roll with all four legs in the air!

Pictures won't load here, maybe for the same reason that Facebook is inaccessible in this country! I will try again, sometime soon..........

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