Finally I am writing this post. FINALLY. It will be in more than one part, since if it were all one post it would be REALLY long. So let me start with part I.
We stayed in a town called Kuşadasi (pronounced Kushadasi), which is on the Aegean coastline of Turkey. We were literally 500m from the sea, and our hotel, even though we were in a room at the back, had a great view. I didn’t really know where we were staying until we got there.
The plane was at a reasonable time in the afternoon, and since the flight was four hours I got a little bit bored and started taking some weird pictures and videos, like the next generation of selfie.
We arrived in Turkey late, then took a two-hour coach journey to the hotel. We didn’t have much time to look around when we arrived, since we got into the room and went right to sleep. The next morning we had more time, so we went around and I believe we swam in the pool. In the afternoon, we went to the beach (which was PACKED) and stayed there for a little while. All in all a lazy day.
But get this. We got FREE meals and FREE drinks in the hotel! We just went up to the bar, asked for a drink and we got it for free! That was amazing, BUT they served free local alcohol so maybe some people abused that priviledge…
On Tuesday (aka the next day) we were booked in for a boat trip around the coast of Turkey and very near Greece. Now that was fun. We stopped four times throughout the day on beaches or near the shore, and we could swim, snorkel and jump off the side of the boat. On the first stop, I wasn’t so sure about jumping off, but when these Russian guys started to do it I thought ‘hey ho’ and jumped off the bottom deck. It was great, so I climbed up to the top deck and leapt off. When I smacked into the water, my bikini top came up, so I had just seconds to sort it out before I bobbed up half-naked under the gaze of the Russians. The water was very deep so it was all OK.
And, for the first time, I went snorkelling! The water was so clear, but with the mask on it was incredible. I had no idea there were that many fish and other creatures swimming so close by. We snorkelled around a very barnacle-y shore, which looked like one of the reefs or underwater views you see in documentaries. I just wished my camera was waterproof, so I could take some pictures.
We stopped a second time, and again I jumped in (more than once) and we did more snorkelling. The water here was VERY blue, and since Jada wasn’t swimming, she took a few pictures.
Between stops, I got loads of pictures of very similar-looking coastline, and a lot of pictures of the water, which seemed to be a million different shades of blue.
We had lunch (again, free) and carried on to the next stop. While we sailed along, I had an ice cream. It was a Magnum, but the flavour is not like anything that exists in England: black mulberry and blackberry. It was delicious. It had a layer of chocolate, a layer of black mulberry and blackberry jam stuff, another layer of chocolate, then vanilla ice cream. In Turkey they have SO many more flavours: pistachio, hazelnut, the aforementioned black mulberry and blackberry, espresso, an ominously-named ‘Pink’ and more. (I will get to the ‘Pink’ later.)
Sorry about that ice cream tangent. I took tons more photos, and then we stopped on a beach. Every so often, we saw another ship go by, doing the exact same cruise that we were doing. One boat looked like a pirate ship, and a couple of them had slides. They started at the top of the boat, wound around it and ended up in the sea! I think, on the third stop, Jada decided to swim, since we were on a beach. We tried to get her to jump off the side of the boat, and eventually she did, even though she was pretty scared! She also tried snorkelling, and I think I am right in saying she quite enjoyed it.
Soon we got to the fourth and final stop, and I decided that I would do a flip off the side of the boat. I saw one of those crazy Russians doing it, so I thought that I would have a go. My dad jumped off the bottom deck before me, and after he did it, I thought I would jump off the top. It took a while to work out how to do the flip, and once I’d worked it out I plopped off the side. Sadly, I didn’t straighten up at the end so I landed painfully on my bum. But at least I did a flip off the top! My dad can’t say that (ha ha).
I was bobbing around in the water, snooping on a couple we called the PDA couple, since they were old and could not get their hands off each other. They asked a random person on the boat to take a picture of them kissing. The husband had jumped off the side, but the wife was not following him. He was encouraging her and said ‘that girl did a flip off the side, you can do it too!’ but she wasn’t having any of it. They were English, so I said ‘DO IT FOR ENGLAND!’ After a lot of fussing (and chicken noises) she retreated, unfortunately. Not impressed.
After the fourth stop, which was right next to Greece (you could see Samos on your right, and then Turkey on your left, as illustrated in the picture.) we started to head back.
It was kind of sad to be going back, but the cruise was amazing while it lasted. On the way back I sat and dangled my legs over the edge, next to a Romanian guy who encouraged Jada to jump off the side (he said ‘I will jump with you!’). The tour leader of the Russian people sat next to him, and I witnessed their love beginning to form. I had another ice cream and listened to them talk, in English, about topics like Facebook, work and feet. She told him the name of the hotel she was working at, and said ‘if you have any free time, come and see me’. He was being very romantic and kept holding her hand or putting his hand round her waist. They exchanged numbers in the end, and I hope it went well. But alas, they live in different countries, so it could have been doomed to just be a summer fling. The Romanian guy looked head-over-heels with joy though.
Read the next instalment to find out about our trip to Ephesus, including FROGS! TOILETS! AND GLADIATORS!
Your travelling blogger, Jaz