A Travellerspoint blog


Days 99-100 Over the Equator, homeward bound

semi-overcast 20 °C
View 100 days/ 100 gün on ayca ozer's travel map.

It is the big day, and a very long one, we are returning home to Istanbul, via Miami-London...
Travel anxiety hit us big time as we only got to sleep for an hour or so. Woke up at 4 AM to go to the airport, we are advised to be at the airport 3 hrs ahead of our flight by everybody and we take it seriously. Check-in done in 15 minutes, we end up strolling thru the airport corridors and shops, on the lookout for the last minute souvenirs and pisco, but we still have more than two hours to kill at the gate! Once again we are reminded that, online and/or word of mouth travel advisory might not be the most accurate information, but it's the only one, one has whilst in transit.
As we board the plane, I am kindly asked to step aside to get my carry-on stuff searched for explosives. Luckily, there is none to be found.
In a few hours, we cross over the Equator and leave the southern hemisphere, our home for the last 99 days.
6 hours later we arrive in Miami Airport, we have 3 hours 'till our connecting flight. Very busy passport control check brings up a few curious bits of information on the screen apparently and we are asked to step in to the special questioning area, well, for further questioning. Ayca insists it's my bushy beard and Peruvian green commie hat that triggered the inquisition, maybe she is right, again!90_IMG_1984.jpg
Going thru a set of questions, I state traveling in South America now and the Middle East in the past, living in Turkey, owning a business there, being a British Citizen, going to school in the US, working in the US and provide all sorts of convincing answers. Ayca is cross-examined in another corner. And we're told to proceed to the next room, where a similar set of questions are asked. And we're finally relased to go pick up or bags. We head down to luggage claim only to see that there is no way of getting out of there anytime soon. Once at customs desk we are led thru the "Green Line" to our connecting flight to make sure we are not carrying any quinua, corn or potato seeds! Finally thru the customs after two and a half hours we check-in our bags at a luggage trolley by the street door, god knows where it will go, but who cares, we're going home, and we don't want to carry the bags no more.
Thru another annoying security check, we barely made it to the gate to board the London flight, after 3 hours, where we are greeted with usual exaggerated but honest English hospitality, signs of getting closer to Europe. London bound flight is an overnight one, so the plan is to have a few drinks over dinner, watch a movie or two, and pass out to wake up in London at 6 AM. After dinner the flight is so bumpy that everybody is bound down by seat belts and there are no refreshments served for the remainder of the flight. Watching a movie turns out to be a challenge between actually following the movie plot and talking to the woman next to us, to make sure she does not "go". At the end, luckily, she does not "go", because she was busy talking to Ayca all night long.
In London, my "hometown", we are greeted with extreme warmth as my British passport is not even looked at at the passport control, security check/x-ray only takes 3 mins. I proudly hit the "smiley button" on the automated security check survey machine there, traveling made easy! But we still have another 3 hours to kill. Later at the gate I am approached by a Heathrow Airport surveyor to conduct a "travel made easy" survey. It turns out, the only drawback of the airport is that there is no working wi-fi! But don't take my word for it...
3 hours waiting and 3 more flying, we land in Istanbul. As we walk towards passport control we meet two Greek fellas who sat in front of us on the flight. Apparently they traveled in South America for 3 months, like us, but in just the opposite direction, from Peru to Brazil. They live right outside Edirne, across the border from us, and they are back just in time for the new farming season, they decided not to hibernate but to go to South America this winter. The tall one turns out to be a musician, plays the bag-pipe he tells us. At this instant we recall seeing a bag-pipe player in Uyuni, Bolivia, about a month ago, and going thru our camera roll we confirm that it is indeed him that we saw in Uyuni.
We all scream in delight and start laughing, reminding ourselves, the world is so big, but yet so small, distances far, yet close, we as humans so small, yet the urge to travel ever present, once again.

Posted by ayca ozer 13:06 Archived in Peru Tagged london airport lima istanbul south america security europe bolivia miami equator heathrow uyuni bag-pipe Comments (0)

Day 98 Lima Last Minute Local

semi-overcast 22 °C
View 100 days/ 100 gün on ayca ozer's travel map.

The lasts two days of the trip, we set out to explore as much as we can, it is our last breath…
We take a public bus out to Larco Museum, which shows artifacts from Northern Cultures of Peru, but it is a trek to get out there, as it takes exactly one hour to get there, for 1 Sol only though.
We enter thru the erotic artifacts section. Pre Inka cultures (especially Moche) depicted sex in various ways, in bottles, and scultuptures, there are monogamous and polygamous scenes everywhere. There are even sculptures of the dead masturbating, but life goes on after death doesn't it? Or does it?
Later we enter the darkly lit main exhibition halls. Culltures from mostly the Northern parts of Peru are exhibited extensively in social, war, cuisine and jewelry sections. Some exhibits resemble the Arte Precolombino Museum in Cusco, it turns out, both museums are curated by Larco Museum.
The last piece is a gold plated ceremonial gear shown in a glass box framed by gold leaf painted wood frame, but the real impressive section is the storage area where every single piece in Larco collection is housed in glass shelves, a total of 40.000 antique pieces.
After Larco, a quick look at the map, convinces us that it might be a good idea to visit the zoo nearby since we did not get a chance to see some of the infamous animals in the wild. As we enter the zoo, we first visit the mountain range mimicking The Andes mountains, which houses the mighty condors, the lazy pumas & foxes, the lovely lamas and some livestock. Then off to the jungle range with tons of birds like colorful and toylike tucans, the local idol cock of the rock, the minion monkeys, some pretty impressive black panthers and funny tapirs.
After two hours, filled up with the last last dose of wild animals, we decide to head out to a new brewery downtown for lunch. On the street waiting for the bus, we board the exact bus we got on to get here. Naturally, the bus clerk recognizes us but does not give us any two for one discount!
Back in dowtown at the brewery we sample some brews but not impressed at all, we hit the souvenir shops for last minute shopping.
For dinner we go to a popular Italo-Peruvian fusion restaurant for a last chance to digest the South American fare.
Content and not quite aware of our departure the next day we head back to the hotel for a good night's sleep, but it isn't there, it must be travel anxiety!

Posted by ayca ozer 13:44 Archived in Peru Tagged hotel bus the of shopping zoo lima museum rock miraflores downtown souvenirs cock tucan brewery larco cusine italo-peruvian Comments (0)

95-97. Gunler: Lima

sunny 28 °C
View 100 days/ 100 gün on ayca ozer's travel map.

100 gunluk seyahatimizin son duragi Lima'ya, bir yandan donus yoluna girmenin saskinligi diger yandan ise aklimizdaki rotayi tamamlamis olmanin dinginligiyle variyoruz. Lima'nin kalmak icin en keyifli mahallesi oldugu soylenen Miraflores'deki airbnb evimize yerlesiyoruz. Bu mahalle, okyanusun dibinde biten yuksek yamaclarin ustune insa edilmis, hep bakip da dokunamama durumu. IMG_1785.jpg Yoksa ev okyanusa on dakika, Marriot otelin  arkasinda. Kisaca sehrin yeme- icme ve havali alis-veris merkezinde :)) Hava yumusacik...Bavuldan yine yazliklar cikiyor, gunler askili T-shirt ve sort tirilliginde.

Akil alir gibi degil ama Lima'da ilk isimiz i-shop'a ugramak. Cuzco'da iphone sarjim calismaz olunca tek bulabildigimiz Cin mali sarj telefonumun canina okudu. (Aman siz siz olun, pili bitiriyor, sarja takili konusursaniz carpiyor vb.) yenisini alinca gorduk ki pilin kapasitesi yarilanmis. Ez cumle: bu seyahat reklami yapilan alet olmadan bu kadar olmazdi :))

Evde hafif bir yemek pisirip ardindan hizlica uyumak istiyoruz, ne var ki gece kolay gecmiyor. Ertesi sabah kaldigimiz yeri degistirip bir otele geciyoruz. Ozer otelde Six Nations rugby macini yakalayinca otelden cikisimiz ogleden sonrayi buluyor.  
Lima'daki ilk tam gunumuzu yavastan alip, en yakinimizdaki diger mahalle Barronca'ya yuruyoruz. Burasi daha bohem hatta biraz da sayfiye...yeme- icme yerleri espirili. Cagdas sanat muzesi hemen mahallenin girisinde. Son donem de ne kadar cagdas sanati ihmal ettigimizi hatirlayip hemen bir doz aliyoruz. Muze geneli vasat ama "Waste land" adli filmden tanidigimiz Vik Muniz'in retrospektifini gorunce doyuyoruz :)) 90_IMG_1804.jpg

Pazar sabahi dinc uyaniyoruz, gune taze bir baslangic yapalim deyip kendimizi erkenden sokaklara atiyoruz. Megersem saat 13:00 kadar ana cadde spor icin kapatilmis. Halk bisiklet, paten, kaykay kusanmis, olmadi kosuyor. IMG_1828.jpg Guney Amerika buyuk kentlerinde cokca karsimiza cikan, bu 7'den 77'ye sportif durum bir kez daha gozlerimizi yasartiyor!
Bizde de azim var durmak yok deyip, tabanlari yagliyoruz. Bulundugumuz mahalleden eski kente dogru giderken ilk karsimiza cikan mabet Huaca Pucllana, 90_IMG_1834.jpg Inkalardan cook onceki (IO 200-700)medeniyetlerden Wari ait olan piramit seklindeki tapinak. Bildik Misir Piramitlerinden farkli olarak bu yapi bir dikdortgen pirizma. Kitap buyuklugunde tuglalarin yanyana dizimiyle insa edilmis. "Kutuphane duvar" dediklerini bu insaat teknigiyle yapilar, 'kitaplar' arasinda mesafe kaldigi icin depreme dayanikli oluyor. 90_IMG_1836.jpg Gun asiri 4 siddetinde, haftada bir 5 Richter ustu deprem yasanan Lima'da yuzyillarca dayanmanin sirri boylece ortaya cikiyor. 
Her nesil tarafindan yeni bir kat (seviye) cikilmasi suretiyle yukselen bu tapinagin odak noktasi adak edilen kurbanlar. Her kati kazdikca insan ve cesitli hayvan oluleri cikiyor. Tanrilara kurban verme inanci (hatta kimi rivayetlere gore guncelligini korudugu ihtimali) Bolivya ve Peru'da yaygin. Artik bizi rahatsiz eden bu hikayelerden cok, yeni kent tarafindan kusatilmis bu kalintilara bakan bir evde yasamanin nasil olabilecegine kafa yormayi tercih ediyoruz.

Bir kez daha yola koyulup eski kente dogru bir kac saat daha yuruyoruz. Yemek icin mola verdigimizde 8 km yurumus olmamiza karsin eski kente bir bu kadar daha yol oldugunu farkedince, toplu tasimayi kesfe karar veriyoruz :))
Sonunda Lima'nin eski kentinin meydanindayiz. Cusco ve Arequipa meydanindan pek farkli degil. Ihtisamli koloniyel mimari. 90_IMG_1865.jpg Kokusuyla aklimizi celen Limali ascilarin sokakta actigi tezgah daha cok ilgimizi cekiyor. Upuzun masalarda halk yok paraya bu tezgahlardan tabak doldurup afiyetle yiyor. Tum ascilarin sirtinda "Lima, Guney Amerika'nin Gastronomi Baskenti" yaziyor. IMG_1860.jpg Midemizi erken doldurdugumuza hayiflaniyoruz. Ama endiseye mahal yok, tum Peru ve ozellikle Lima restoranlariyla unlu. 26805BE32219AC681728042B1E3B7098.jpg Ve bizim onumuzde 8 ogun daha var :))

Posted by ayca ozer 09:47 Archived in Peru Tagged lima miraflores vik muniz gastronomi Comments (0)

Days 93 & 94 : Poor Man's Galapagos

sunny 28 °C
View 100 days/ 100 gün on ayca ozer's travel map.

Overnight bus from Arequipa, first thru the winding mountain roads and valleys, then thru the desert, we are on our way to the town of Paracas, via Pisco. Descending from 2500 meters above sea level, mountains give way to rocks and then to sand, and then sand to the ocean, Pacific abuts the desert dunes, not the beach here.
Since Pisco is not a scheduled bus stop, and Paracas too small to actually have a bus terminal, we ended up on a Lima bound bus. IMG_1991.jpg
Bored to death due to innumerable stops made by the bus earlier and eager to get to stop the soonest, looking out the window, we spot a Pisco sign at the side of the road amidst pisco fields on the desert.
Getting ready to get off, waiting for the bus to make a stop, we notice we are already in another town! Bus crew forgot to drop us off. Driver makes an emergency stop on the highway and lets us off. We cross the highway to head back in Pisco direction to possibly catch a bus or hitch hike. One of the cars we waive at stops and agrees to take us in to Pisco for five Soles. We get in the car, we are about 20 mins out of downtown Pisco it turns out. It also turns out, this car is delivering a package to a factory in Pisco. Both the package and us safely delivered in Pisco, from there we take a collectivo to Paracas. Once again, it turns out this collectivo is not only a shared taxi, but also a food and package delivery car to nearby fish oil factories.

3 packages delivered to factories, in about 30 mins we reach Chaco, the town in Paracas, and check in to a hotel, 90_IMG_1638.jpg book Islas Ballestas tour
Ballestas are a group of small islands off the coast of Paracas Reserve peninsula, and are home to many many birds, a lot of sea lions and some penguins.
So the next morning, we leave on the two hour morning tour to survey the islands from the boat, but unfortunately tourists are not allowed on the island, only occasional bird dropping collectors are. IMG_1995.jpg Since there are "millions" of birds around, bird droppings pile up on the islands and then scraped off by collectors about every 7-8 years, and shipped to farms in the area to be used as fertilizer. IMG_1664.jpg

The bonus of the trip is to see the "candleholder" drawn on the side of a hill in the reserve. Obviously, mysteries about why it was drawn are a many.
Back on land, we chill-kill time back at the hotel for a day, before catching our bus to Lima, there isn't much else to do around Paracas apparently, which is why the place is packed even in the low season. IMG_1729.jpg

Posted by ayca ozer 08:50 Archived in Peru Tagged bird paracas candle holder dropings Comments (0)

91 ve 92 : Arequipa'da iki gun

sunny 26 °C
View 100 days/ 100 gün on ayca ozer's travel map.

Cusco'dan gece otobus yolculuguyla
Peru'nun tarihi dokusu korunmus diger bir sehiri olan Arequipa'ya geciyoruz. Bunca zaman yasadigimiz turlu otobus yolculugina yeni bir boyut ekleniyor. Dileyen yolcular BINGO oynuyor. 180_IMG_1476.jpg Bildigimiz tombala usulu muavin numaralari cekip mikrofonla iki katli otobusun yolcularina okuyor. Bingo yapan bagiriyor... Ozer oynarken uyumusum.(Odul neydi ya da kazandik mi?..zzzz...)

Arequipa 'beyaz sehir' olarak aniliyor. Ilk bakista nedeni binalarin insa edildigi volkanik beyaz tas. Iki volkanin etegine kurulmus olan kent( bkz ilk fotograf) deprem bolgesinde. Bu taslar hafif ancak depreme dayanikli. Her yer badana beyazi. Sehirde koloniel mimari hakim. Izgara plan uzerinde bir cok ic avlulu mekan. IMG_1479.jpg

Kentin goz bebegi, tum Peru kent ve kasabalarinda gordugumuz ana meydan ( Plaza de Armas). Cusco'da oldugu gibi, bas kosede bir katedral olmak uzere kalan kenarlari boylu boyunca iki katli binalarla donatilmis alan. 90_IMG_1486.jpg Halk gunun her saati burada takiliyor. Meydan gibi meydan! Bulusuyor, yiyor, iciyor, muzik dinliyor.. 90_IMG_1485.jpg Turistler katedralin merdivenlerinde, daha parali olanlar binalarin ikinci katindaki balkonlardalar.

Artik adet edindigimiz uzere, eger bir kentte "once gez sonra bahsis ver" turu varsa kesin yaziliyoruz. Arequipa'da bu turlari kentin Bilgi Merkezi ve universitesi ortaklasa duzenliyor. Hem universite ogrencilerine harclik oluyor hem de biz gezginler sadece turistik yerleri ogrenmekle kalmiyor kentin gundelik hayatina dair ipuclari da ediniyoruz...

Rehberimiz tura, bir tabu yikarcasina, beyaz sehrin hikayesini anlatmakla basliyor. Arequipa'nin, tum Peru tarihinde Isgalci Ispanyollara en cok destek olan kent oldugunu soyluyor. Ispanyol kulturune sahip cikan ve yasatan kent oldugu icin " beyaz adama" gonderme beyaz sehir olarak anildigini anlatiyor. Ayrica vaktiyle zenginlik gostergesi olarak binalarin rengarenk boyandigini zamanla ifade biciminin yalinlastigini belirtiyor. Nitekim ertesi gun Guney Amerika'nin en buyuk manasterlarindan biri olan Santa Catalina de Siena'yi gezdigimizde vaktiyle bu kentin nasil bir renk ahengi icinde oldugunu canlandirmamiz kolaylasiyor.
Ispanyollarin isgalinden yaklasik 40 yil sonra 1579'da kurulan bu manaster zaman icinde 450 kadar rahibeyi agirlayabilecek kapasiteye ulasmis. 90_IMG_1602.jpg 20.000 metrekarelik bir alana yaygin manaster alani duvarlarin arkasinda bir sehir gibi. Ilginc yani katilan her rahibe icin bir odanin insa edilerek bu sekilde organik bicimde sekillenmis olmasi ( ayrilan rahibe odasini satiyor. Ya da devredebiliyor, olenin yerine yeni birisi yerlesebiliyor) 90_IMG_1584.jpg Rahibeler nadiren bir araya toplandiklari mekanlar( torensel yemek ve ibadetler icin salonlar) disinda kendi icine kapali hucrelerden olusan bir kompleks. Suan sadece 5 rahibeye ev sahipligi yapan Manaster, kendini surdurebilir kilmak ve namini korumak icin bos kalan kompleksin buyuk bir kismini ziyarete acmis.( Bizim ziyaretimiz 3 saat surdu. )

IMG_1509.jpg Rehberli turumuza geri donersek, diger duraklarimiz biraz daha turistikti. Once bu bolgelerin onemli gecim kaynagi Alpaca yununden tekstil ureten bir fabrikaya gittik. IMG_1503.jpg Hayvanlari ( deve familyasindan olan bu hayvanlari Patagonya'dan yukariya siralarsak: Guanoco, vicunya, lama ve alpaca) gorduk, "oz hakiki" yunun nasil uretildiginin surecini ogrendik. El isi goz nuru emek doken bir dag kizinin sabrina hayran olduk. IMG_1522.jpg

Diger turistik duragimiz ise Peru'nun milli ickisi Pisco Sour'un yapilisini izlemekti. Daha once Sili'de katildigim mutfak kursunda nasil yapildigini ogrendigim bu ickinin iki ulke arasinda buyuk bir kapisma sebebi olmasi hayret verici (bir yandan da pek asina). IMG_1544.jpg Rehberimize gore sonunda Avrupa Birligi(?!?) bu ickinin Peru'ya ait olduguna kanaat getirmis. Aslinda aradaki fark net: Peru yumurta akini kopurtup ustune koyuyor:)))

Biz de bu kavgadan faydalanip :)) tadini ve etkisini sevdigimiz bu ickiyi her firsatta tadiyoruz :))

Posted by ayca ozer 05:57 Archived in Peru Tagged arequipa santa pisco alpaca catalina sour Comments (0)

(Entries 1 - 5 of 11) Page [1] 2 3 » Next